Von Holst et al 2002 and Rodel et al 2009 recorded that

Von Holst et al. (2002) and Rodel et al. (2009) recorded that, pup mortality during the nest period between postnatal day one and 20 was 32.4%, where pups died on postnatal day one was 71.4%, the main cause of this large number of pup mortality was malnutrition and were obviously insufficiently nursed by the mother. Previous literatures by (Ayyat et al. 1995; Tawfeek 1995; Coureaud et al. 2000a; Poigner et al. 2000; Castellini et al. 2003; Ibrahim et al. 2003; Bautista et al. 2008; Gotz et al. 2008; Rodel et al. 2008b) discussed that one of the managemental causes of mortality is the litter size which has a potential effect on nest mortality as a high number of pups reduce the share of milk obtained by the individual pup, resulting in lower postnatal growth and survival. So, weak kits of low birth weight are more subjected to die because of starvation. The individual birth weight usually declined with the increase in litter size. Mortality percentages during the suckling period were found to increase significantly with the increase in litter size at birth. The construction, position as well as the type of bedding of the nest box is considered as factors affect the rate of kit mortality.Bhatt et al. (2002) mentioned that the litter size and weight at weaning were higher in winter than summer. Similar literatures were observed in Angola rabbits by (Kumar et al. 2005). Kunkele (1992) and Rodel et al. (2008a) found that dead pups with characteristic wounds induced by the incisors of a rabbit (cannibalism) and occurred during the first 10 days after birth.Rashwan and Marai (2000) stated that the prevalence of pre-weaning mortality was 70 to 78% in the first week and 16.63% in the second week. Causes of mortality were multiple such as the large number of offsprings (31-31.3%), cannibalism (17.6-18%) and insufficient milk supply or starvation (11.7-12%) besides unknown causes (21-25%). (Khalil 1993) added that mortality may be the low post-natal maternal ability due to low milking and suckling abilities. Disturbance of the doe during or after kindling usually leads to loss of young because the doe may drop her feti outside the nest box and leaves them without care to die or even it may eat or injury them in a trial to protect them. Marai et al. (1996) and Ayyat and Marai (1998) demonstrated that pre-weaning mortality was higher in summer than in winter season due to the direct effect of heat stress on young and reduction of dam’s milk production. Additionally, Shehata et al. (1998) recorded that the highest prevalence of mortality 18.52% mortality rate during summer compared to 3.70, 7.41 and 7.41% during spring, autumn and winter seasons, respectively.

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