The Fabulous Pater Boys
The Fabulous Pater Boys
One of our greatest joys in the local food story is sharing our passion for properly raised animals with others. We often farm out litters of our heritage breed Silver Fox rabbits with a pasture pen to families for a 10-week rotational grazing experiment in growing meat at home.
The kids learn about care & commitment by providing the diverse diet that makes our rabbits special. They learn about “respecting the protein” and taking the gift in gratitude. They understand that these bunnies will not be celebrating a birthday and appreciate how far superior their lives are compared to livestock raised in large confinement operations. They are paid with a dressed carcass when the kits reach market weight but occasionally someone takes payment with the fur still on.
We are proud to announce that Josh and Ryan Pater will be “riding for the brand”. Our newest contract grazing partners raised a fine litter of Silver Foxes that went to Paragon Restaurant at Foxwoods and received two plump does in exchange for their effort. They are building pasture pens and we expect to purchase finish weight kits from them this coming spring. One of their females had reached breeding age, so we lent them “The General”, our herd buck, when they were finished with construction.
Some daily journal notes:
09/14/13: The first day we brought Oreo home we set her up in her new cage, which is a 4’ x 2’ hutch that Joshua built. We gave her some goldenrod and she gobbled it up.
09/15/13: The next day we fed Oreo some Timothy Hay and she also ate 7 oz. of food.
09/16/13: Tried to breed Oreo with the buck (General), but it did not work. She would not allow him to latch. Oreo ate a maple stick and some lettuce and carrots.
09/17/13: Tried to breed Oreo but she didn’t like it and started to fight with the buck when we put him in with her.
09/18/13: Tried to feed Oreo some lemon bomb but she didn’t eat it, she must not like it. Tried some grape leaves, which she loved.
09/19/13: Breed Oreo with the buck
09/20/13: Fed Oreo some cherry tomatoes
09/21/13: Added extra straw as bedding on the first cold night for warmth. Fed Oreo some whole oats.
On the 27th day after first breeding attempt, we put a nest box with straw in Oreo’s cage. She pooped in her nest box.
PMB – Initial breeding attempt was not successful. “The General” has returned to the Pater homestead for an extended conjugal visit. We are looking forward to supporting these outstanding young men in their ongoing agricultural endeavors….