PictureMoonshine 9-13
Hybrid vitality is where this project began.  We are working on maintains pure lines of both our heritage breeds: American Chinchilla and Silver fox.  But we also wanted to see where different crosses could take us and make a great meat mutt.  The goal for the mutts is to reach a consistent 5 lbs between 8-9 lbs throughout the litters.

We started with Obi a 10lb Am Chin buck and breed him to Pocket, our 10+lb Californian doe in the early summer of 2013. 
You might remember from our previous post on growth rate that we retained a doe, Moonshine, out of Obilesk and Pocket.  She reached 5 lbs+ at 10 weeks, at 4 months she was 8 lbs and at 9 months (and 2 litters under her belt) she is a hefty 11 1/2 lbs. 

Our next step was to bred her back to her sire (which is called line breeding).  Sad to say Obi was 3 1/2 yrs old and is no longer with us.   So this buck that we held from this litter born around Thanksgiving is our only buck out of Obi's lines.  This litter had nice and solid kits, so we picked the biggest and heaviest of them.  He reached 5 lbs + at 9 weeks, which was 1 week sooner than his dame Moonshine.  We just weighted him at 4 months and he is 9 lbs already.  We will see where we go form here.  The only drawback that we have noticed is that Moonshine has smaller litters- 6 and 7 kits, but they are our fastest growers.  We are hoping that for her next round she will reach 8 kits but as long as she has at least 7 we are satisfied with these results.  Our plans are to breed this buck named Reishi, to either his grand dame or to one of our Silver fox does, which should help to build up the shoulder area and lengthen the loins.  

Moonshine and her litter of beasty bucks
Reishi, our retained buck form Moonshine and Obi.