Rod bipolar cells constitute the second-order neuron in the rod pathway. Previous investigations of the rabbit retina have evaluated the development of other components of the rod pathway, namely the dopaminergic and All amacrine cell populations. To gain further insights into the maturation of this retinal circuitry, we studied the development of rod bipolar cells, identified with antibodies directed to the α isoform of protein kinase C (PKC), in the rabbit retina. Lightly immunostained PKC-immunoreactive (IR) somata are first observed at postnatal day (PND) 6 in the distal inner nuclear layer (INL). Immunostaining is also observed in the outer plexiform layer (OPL), indicating the presence of PKC-IR dendrites. PKC-IR axons are present in the INL oriented toward the inner plexiform layer (IPL). Several of them terminate with enlarged structures resembling growth cones. At PND 8, some immunostained terminal bulbs, characteristic of rod bipolar cells, are detected in the proximal IPL. PKC-IR cells at PND 11 (eye opening) display stronger immunostaining and more mature characteristics than at earlier ages. The dendritic arborizations of these cells in the OPL and their axon terminals in the IPL attain mature morphology at later ages (PND 30 or older). The density of PKC-IR cells shows a peak at PND 11 followed by a drastic decrease up to adulthood. The total number of PKC-IR cells increases from PND 6 to PND 11 and then it remains almost unchanged until adulthood. The mosaic of PKC-IR cells is nonrandom in some retinal locations at PND 6, but the overall regularity index at PND 6 is lower than at older ages. The present data provide a comprehensive evaluation of the development of rod bipolar cells in the postnatal rabbit retina and are consistent with those previously reported for dopaminergic and All amacrine cell populations, indicating that different components of the rod pathway follow a similar pattern of maturation, presumably allowing the rod pathway to be functional at eye opening.