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Angora rabbits (not to be confused with angora goats!) may have existed as early as Ancient Babylon. They are thought to have originated in Ankara, Turkey, although this is only speculation. They were first introduced to Europe in the 18th century and were only brought to the US after World War I.
Five breeds of angora rabbits exist: English, commonly used in showing; French, a breed whose fur is popular for hand spinning; Giant, known for their intense coloration; Satin, known for their rich luster and coloration; and German. Depending on breed, angoras weigh between 6 and 12 pounds. They come in a variety of colors, often with specific color points on the ears, nose, and feet.
Angora wool is plucked or cut off the rabbits when they molt, a pa rt of the natural growth cycle of their coat. They lose their wool coat every 3-4 months. Their wool is a favorite among hand spinners, especially beginners, due its soft texture and easiness to handle.
Angora wool makes beautiful, warm, lightweight garments. Items made from angora wool are extremely popular in Europe and are a growing commodity in the US.