I have always been a lover of rabbit since i became involved in the agricultural field, i.e. from the age of 17 when i entered the gates of the Clifton Dupigny Community College (now Dominica State College) and after my return from studies i got involved in the now defunct Dominica Rabbit Breeders Association (although some members have refused to see the light of day and i dont blame them with so much promise in the rabbit business). So i always take interested in everything rabbit and it is always a pleasure to read or hear about the Cockrane Rabbit Festival.
I remember when the Rabbit Association was busy going around the island looking for small rabbit farmers and encouraging them to increase production and introducing new breeds (efforts were made). After much of the fanfare and initial interest of many dominicans who came out in the hundreds to the rabbit meat culinary festival on the Roseau bayfront, it seems that rabbit has gone back to being a backyard activity for many and a commercial one for just a few persons.
But it is always good to go back to Cockrane for the Annual Rabbit Festival and this year will be no different. However, it is very strange that although the community has the biggest meat festival that very few of the villagers in this eco-village breed rabbit. I remember one year as part of the Ministry of Agriculture, where i work, we had a workshop on rabbit breeding in Cockrane and instead of totally embracing the idea, the livestock farmers was asking when we were coming up do to the pork production workshop showing more interest in the pig than the rabbit.
However it is still good that the community leaders and few rabbit breeders have kept the culinary festival alive, much to the delight of myself and the hundreds who flock to Cockrane each year. I expect to eat a lot of rabbit meat on that day, drink a lot of rum, in moderation, if possible. lol.
But hats off to Cockrane again and keep up the good work. It is good to see the festival as a part of the Reunion 2008 celebrations calendar for Dominica.
More about the Festival below:
EVER YEAR ABOUT THIS TIME THE PEACEFUL VILLAGE OF COCKRANE COMES ALIVE WHIT ITS ANNUAL VILLAGE CELEBRATION THE RABBIT FESTIVAL, THIS FESTIVAL WHICH WAS CREATED BY THE (C.V.I.C) COCKRANE VILLAGE IMPROVEMENT COMMITTEE CAME TO LIFE 5 YEARS AGO WHEN THE C.V.I.C SAW THE NEED FOR A NEW, INNOVATIVE AND UNIQUE IDEA WITCH WAS SURE TO BRING VISITERS TOURIST AND ISLANDERS ALIKE TO ENJOY THE WONDERFUL NATURAL FEATURE THAT THE VILLAGE HAS TO OFFER.
THE VILLAGE OF COCKRANE IS VERY UNIQUE INDEED WITH SOME OF ITS HISTORIC ATRIBUTES STILL HERE TO SEEN, COCKRANE VILLAGE IS ALL SO A GATE WAY TO A UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE THE MORNE TROIS PITONS NATIONAL PARK.
ANOTHER EVENT UNIQUE TO THE VILLAGE OF COCKRANE AND ALSO A HIGHLIGHT FOR SOME OF THE VISITORS TO THE RABBIT FESTIVAL IS THE ONE AND ONLY BAT TOURS WHERE A GROUP OF TRIANED TOUR GUIDES TAKE YOU IN TO THE RAIN FOREST TO VIEW A SPECTACULAR CALL OF NATURE WHERE WE HAVE THOUSANDS OF BATS ALL COME FLYING OUT OF THEIR CAVE BETTER KNOWN AS THE TOU SANTI OR "STINKING HOLE' A LARGE CAVE IN THE GROUND.
A SITE TO SEE SO COME AND GET AN EXPERIENCE OF A LIFE TIME