Silver Marten Rabbit

  • COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: France, England, United States
  • YEAR RECOGNIZED: 1929
  • USES: Fur, meat
  • WEIGHT: 9.5 pounds (4.3 kg) max., senior does
  • BODY TYPE: Commercial
  • FUR TYPE: Flyback; ARBA Commercial Normal Fur Standard
  • COLORS: Silver tipping and white trim on a fur field of black, blue, chocolate, or sable
    THE SILVER MARTEN WAS DEVELOPED IN THE EARLY 1920S when black Chinchilla Rabbit kits began appearing in scattered litters in Europe, England, and the United States. These off-colored youngsters, called sports, intrigued some Chinchilla breeders but disgusted others, who began to doubt the quality of the parents.
    In fact, the sports had appeared because of an infusion of Tan Rabbit genes into the gene pool to improve the Chinchilla’s fur. Fans of the new rabbits, which were essentially Tans without the tancolored trim, found that mating the black sports together produced offspring true to type and color. Silver Martens were shown for the first time in France in 1926. The black variety of the breed was accepted by the ARBA in 1929.
    Silver Martens have dense fur with evenly distributed white-tipped guard hairs, lending the breed’s namesake silvery appearance. The outside edge of the rabbit’s ears match the body color, sans white
hairs. The inner portion of the ear is silver-white, as is a fur triangle on the nape and a narrow collar that courses the neck to the rabbit’s underjaw. The nostrils and belly are white, and the eyes are circled by silver-white.
    Ideal weight for the Silver Marten is 8.5 pounds (3.8 kg) for adult does and 7.5 pounds (3.4 kg) for an adult male.