One night we were talking to Kay’s mom about our plans for our rabbits. We currently have five New Zealand whites, two New Zealand reds, and two champagnes.
We explained to her that we planned on using them mainly for meat but also for show and helping others build their own rabbitry. We want to use the entire rabbit including the hides. We would like to get into tanning and using the hides to make blankets, gloves and hats. While talking to Kay’s Mom, Darrick was doing research and came across angora rabbits. Kay early on wanted to get angoras for their fiber but we never really did much research on selling the fiber. Darrick was surprised when he found that angoras are a dual-purpose rabbit! They are used for their fiber and meat.
Further research concentrated on the English/French angoras which are medium sized fiber rabbits. An English or French angora produces roughly 12-16 oz of fiber per year. This raw fiber (straight off the rabbit, not carded) can be sold for around $6-8 an ounce. If the fiber is carded it can be sold for $10-12 per ounce. High quality, hand plucked, carded fiber can go for up to $20 per ounce! We started adding up the numbers, looked at each other, and said in unison “We got the wrong rabbits!”
Angoras do take extra time and work to keep their coats clean and brushed. This process takes about 15-30 minutes a week per rabbit. Some breeders recommend daily brushing or at least a few times a week. It doesn’t seem like a lot but I’m sure it adds up quick when you start breeding them.
At this point, we are committed to our New Zealands and champagne d’argents as they will provide good quality meat for our family. However, I’m sure if we see a deal on a nice pair of angoras, we will make some room in our rabbit barn. Stay tuned as we will be looking at designing and building our barn this summer.
Thank you for following us on our journey. For anyone who has angoras or experience with them we would love to hear your pros and cons and any advice you may have.
Darrick and Kay
Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.