Rabbit Liver Question - help please


Well-Known Member
Good morning gents,

I Went out hunting last night for a few bunnies as i was supposed to be cooking up a stew today. It should have been a busy night, last time i went to this farm was spring and it was full of bunnies, i took 8 without even trying. However last night was barely a bunny to be seen however with some effort i managed 3 for the bag.

Frustratingly i missed the head shot on one and it took a body shot with a V-Max which turned its inside into bunny soup so no longer suitable for consumption. The next was good for the pot.

Finally the last one, looked great - healthy from the outside etc. However when i gutted it i noticed that the liver was spotted. The white spots looked suspect and i cut open the liver to further inspect.

I would greatly appreciate any advice from you lads, is this rabbit only good for fox bait or can i just discard the liver and still use the meat / muscle tissue. Seems such a shame to shoot three and bin two ! on the other hand dont really fancy having tapeworms or some other disease which makes my eyes bleed. Does anyone know what these what lumps / dots are ?


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I would say coxysidiosis , had a lot like that and eaten them all , but not being an expert will probably be wrong ! Ps should have read , i have eaten the bunny not the liver !
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LOL, well if your still here to tell the tale and youve eaten them like that ill not be too worried. Im sure its probably fine as long as properly cooked. I just havent seen one like that before, seen the tape worm larvae and they look different to this. So I had narrowed it to Liver flukes, Coxcy or possible early mixie .. i definetly no expert though im just going on Google image search lol
Thanks gents for all your input, i dont go in for Liver and the like anyway but have decided to keep the rabbit meat and cook it. Fingers crossed! lol..
The lumps of liver fluke I've seen (in deer, not rabbits) have always been dark, rather than the white spots there. I'd suspect coccidiosis, which is not zoonotic (at least not the ones that affect rabbits, toxoplasmi gondii certainly is, and can be passed from dogs to humans where it becomes toxoplasmosis and causes all sorts of nasties, including death in infants and others with compromised immune systems.)

Edited to add, even with T Gondii, if you cook the meat properly you kill the oocycsts, removing the risk of infection. With T. Gondii, the infection route is usually through handling infected feline fecal matter (the cat intestine is the only place it can sexually reproduce) normally when emptying cat litter trays. That's why pregnant women should never empty litter trays!
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normally when emptying cat litter trays. That's why pregnant women should never empty litter trays!

The good news is that it takes a few days for the oocysts to sporolate and become infective.

So long as you make your heavily pregnant wife or girlfriend regularly empty the cats litter tray she will be fine.

Chances are its her cat anyway.............

It could be one of a few things including; liver fluke (Fasciola hepatica), hepatic coccidiosis (Eimeria Stiedia)or a tape worm (taenia pisiformis or taenie serialis). These can cause damage to the liver which can be apparent as white areas. Tape worm eggs are ingested and the larva migrate via the liver to the abdominal cavity where they form cysts which can be seen during meat inspection. It should be noted that Liver Fluke IS zoonotic and should be treated with caution, similarly tapeworms can be zoonotic but these two species aren't thought to be particularly common in humans from what I have read.

Further reading: veterinary Parasitology (Taylor, coop and wall) and CDC.gov

Stop worrying people T-bolt!

Although liver fluke is zoonotic you need to catch it from the free living infective form (metacercariae). There is zero risk consuming an infected liver.

You can get white scars from fluke, but they are usually faded.

Tapeworm are also zoonotic, but have you looked at the pictures? Look nothing like.

It is coccidiosis in this case and the carcase should be fine for consumption, but chuck the livers.
If you're worried about catching liver fluke then don't eat watercress! You certainly won't catch it from a rabbit.