Blue Silver Marten Rabbit
Oryctolagus cuniculus

   The Silver Marten rabbits, though often raised for showing, also make very loveable and charming pet bunnies!

   The Silver Marten rabbit is a very hardy medium sized rabbit. They grow to be between 6 1/2 to 8 1/2 pounds and have an elegant grace. Their most striking characteristic is their beautiful soft fur. The coat of an adult has a polished look with beautifully appointed markings. The Black Silver Marten, which is the most common color seen at shows, has a wonderful contrast between its polished black coat and the silver white markings of its ears and underbelly.

Black Silver Marten baby rabbits
Black Silver Marten (babies) Photo © Animal-World:
Courtesy David Brough

   These bunnies make great pets, though they may be a bit more timid than some of the large breed rabbits. They are playful and love to romp around. They also like toys that they can toss about in their cage.

   At five weeks old, the Silver Marten babies shown on the right have fur that is soft and fuzzy. They have big ears too, that seem to be almost as big as their bodies!

For more information about Rabbits and their care see:
Guide to a Happy, Healthy Rabbit

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Mammalia
  • Order: Lagomorpha
  • Family: Leporidae
  • Genus: Oryctolagus
  • Species: cuniculus

Background:

   The Silver Marten rabbits were developed in the United States as an offshoot from the Chinchilla rabbit in the mid 1920’s. The Chinchilla breeders were reporting “strange little black rabbits” in their litters. These little black rabbits were the start of a trial breeding program that developed into the Silver Martens that we see today.

Description:

   These guys are considered to be a medium breed rabbit, so they do grow up to be fair sized. They will weigh between 6.5 to 8.5 lbs. when full grown.
   These rabbits are primarily raised for showing, though they also make good pets. The fur on the Silver Marten is one of its most striking features with a beautiful polished look to it. Silver Martens display an elegant graceful beauty because of their impressive colorations and markings.

Color differences:

   Color varieties include black, blue, chocolate, or sable; with silver-tipped guard hairs and silver white markings to the eyes, mouth, chin and under parts.
   The Black Silver Martens are the most common at shows and have a stunning contrast between their black and silver white fur.

Silver Marten Color Varieties
"Jewett's Mocha" a Chocolate Silver Marten (female) "Burant's Tatonka" a Black Silver Marten (male)
“Jewett’s Mocha” – Chocolate Female“Burant’s Tatonka” – Black Male
Photos courtesy: Southern Hares Rabbitry

Featured Image Credit: Sergio Moreno P, Shutterstock