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Another thing that attracted me was that I've read somewhere that silage is more nutritious than hay.
Maybe since mold is going to be a hazard no matter what though... I suppose I could try to dry some hay up really quickly, seal it up tight in something like a plastic bin with a sealable lid, or maybe better yet in several differnt smaller containers. That might work, if I used it up quickly enoough and made sure to keep it dry when opening and closing the container... I'd hate to have it mold on me though.
Has anybody else in humid climes had luck with this?
__________ Fri May 24, 2013 11:06 am __________
Frecs wrote:There are youtube videos on making silage on a small scale. But, after watching a good many of them and doing other research, I decided that for rabbits it is better to "make hay" or as I saw it called on one site "dried rabbit salad". IOW, dry the plant matter (guarding against mold) and mix a variety together and store for wintertime feeding. I have not begun this process yet as I have so many projects to do as it is! How to dry (especially in a humid environment) and store large amounts is one of the issues I've not yet resolved.
I like this idea. In my case of course it wouldn't be for winter feeding, but just to relieve the burden of some of the daily forage collecting and make feedings more efficient--and a more "idiot-proof" chore so it's easier when I have to delegate it to someone other than my immediate family. Of course, if I can't store decent amounts at a time without mold issues, I'm not sure it's going to do much for me...
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akane wrote:Generally silage is not used for goats, horses, and rabbits because they are too sensitive to bacteria or mold that can contaminate the feed. One rip in your silage wrap and you have no more herd.
Hay is very hard to get right and will always have some amount of mold. Often in tiny tiny amounts that are not important, but even when it gets into amounts that can be dangerous it is very hard to spot. Silage on the other hand, since it is wet will either be completely wrecked and you will be able to tell from 20 feet away or it will be oxygen free and mold/etc. will literally be unable to survive in it.
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I have seen professional answers, for example https://firstvet.com/uk/questions/712/can-rabbits-eat-silage,saying rabbits can eat silage but that it is not practical. I only use it to provide some relief from hay and made it as follows: The grass was cut before flowering during a dry period and packed into wide mouth quart jars, cut only enough to allow packing, pumped down to .1 atm and back filled with nitrogen with a canning lid tightened enough after back filling to provide a vacuum seal but loose enough to allow gasses to safely escape. Stored at room temperature of about 78F during summer and down to 48F in cool weather and barely above freezing after opening ,I see no indication of mould or rot. For comparison, I prepared one jar with only the air fill and it is not acceptable. The general recommendation is to dry it some in free air before packing but on this small scale production, it is hard to know how much.
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