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Franklin County students place in 4-H rabbit show at North Alabama State Fair

The 4-H Rabbit Show, held in conjunction with the North Alabama State Fair, took place Sept. 18 at the agricultural barn located on the grounds of the North Alabama State Fair in Muscle Shoals.

“Each participant received a rabbit to care for from May to September,” explained Franklin County Extension coordinator Katernia Cole Coffey. “The rabbits are provided by a local family. At the end of the project, they get to keep their rabbits as pets. Those who participate gain knowledge and a sense of accomplishment and learn how to present for the fair exhibition.”

Leslie Goins, 4-H Foundation Regional Extension Agent for Colbert County, said participants learn how to care for rabbits as well as “develop detailed record-keeping skills while increasing independence and learning to be responsible caretakers.”

Cole Coffey said project participants are guided in proper care and also participate in a showmanship clinic to prepare to take part in the exhibition at the NASF.

At the junior level, Lilliana Hood of Tharptown Elementary School received first place for her rabbit in its breed class, compact-type Dutch. She came in second place for showmanship and also for record book.

At the senior Level, Maddie Pearson of Red Bay High School received first place for her rabbit in its breed class, commercial-type California. She placed second in showmanship and also in record book.

In the showmanship category, judging criteria is based solely on the performance of the participant, rather than the rabbit.

Breed judging criteria is based on confirmation and breed standards, including size, shape and coloring. The health of the rabbit is based on a combination of genetic factors and quality of care.

For more information about the program, contact Coffey at 256-332-8880.