Local 4-H members show rabbits at State Fair

For the first time in many years the Chautauqua County 4-H Rabbit program was represented at The Great New York State Fair. Eric Witherow of Sherman Kountry Kids 4-H and Rachel Comstock of Country Critters 4-H Club in South Dayton showed their rabbits.

Program representative Eric said, “I had a great time and am hoping that next year Chautauqua County will have full teams in each division. It was fun and I made new friends.”

Eric’s senior doe was judged as Best Opposite Sex of Breed (meaning a buck won Best of Breed and his doe was runner-up.) Rachel’s rabbit received two blue ribbons at the state fair, her doe took third and her buck took fifth .

Eric competed in the Rabbit Decathlon. In this competition there are 10 stations; each one testing a different area of knowledge. The stations are: anatomy and physiology, nutrition, housing and equipment, health and diseases, terminology, reproduction and genetics, breed identification, records and project evaluation/management, handling evaluation, standards of perfection. Each competitor must go to every station. He/she is given four minutes to answer questions. Each station is worth 10 points.

In additional competition, teams are given a problem scenario and have a limited time to come up with a solution.

All 4-Hers who are competing for the first time are placed in the Novice division. Eric tied for first place individual in the division, but was beaten when tie breaker rules were applied. He therefore earned second place in the individual competition. In the team competition a county which doesn’t have enough for a team can join with other counties to make teams of three or four individuals. Eric joined with two 4-Hers from Orleans county. In the Novice division his team earned second place overall.

Congratulations to all the Chautauqua County 4-H Youth that participated in The Great New York State Fair. The 4-H Youth Development Program is one of many programs offered by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Chautauqua County (CCE-Chautauqua). CCE-Chautauqua is a community based educational organization, affiliated with Cornell University, Chautauqua County Government, the NYS SUNY system, and the federal government through the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture. CCE-Chautauqua is part of a network of extension associations, programs and services located across the state and nation. For more information, call 716-664-9502 or visit our website at www.cce.cornell.edu/chautauqua. Cornell University Cooperative Extension provides equal program and employment opportunities.