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Homemade mixed feed

Provide a well rounded diet without commercial feed, including discussions of the methods and merits of growing fodder.
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Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#1  Unread postby minibackyardfarmer » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:59 am


So we finally found a female rabbit that was to our likings (it is hard in the area as most are kept for breeding) to breed with our two males to build up the quality of meat rabbits and fur that we want.

With our first buck he wanted nothing to do with pellets (the deer loved him for it lol) so I switched over to a better option and easier on our pockets. - we think he's a checkered mix (maybe rex mix but doesn't have the velvety fur but good size). kids called him Yoyo because he has a y in white on his one cheek (hes black and white)

We've done the same thing with our new buck and doe - both are a lionhead mix, doe is a mini rex (if i had to guess on the rex type)/lionhead mix. kids called the buck coal (all black) and the doe is babs buttercup (because our youngest wanted to call her buttercup and he wouldn't budge lol)(shes a satin color)

Anyways I was going to try and do up our own mix, it would cost us more since we can't find bulk pumpkin seeds around for off season, but right now I use:

Royal Wing Wildlife Mix (can get 20lbs for around $9) - corn, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and peanuts (but i've noticed out of the mix this is like a 1 or 2% ratio to the mix there isn't a lot in there).

They get hay (we get free from the father inlaw - mainly used for winter but they eat it and we give them some during the summer if the grass isn't doing great during the really hot spells), alfalfa, and mineral/salt rolls (but they don't really touch the salt ones, so we usually just have a bunch of the mineral ones on hand). Some wild bird feed mix (it has millet in it and a few other things) as a ration feed with their other feed.

We are also working on making rabbit pasture tractors so they are gaining grass better in their diet (we can't keep up with our buck YoYo when it comes to this he will literally put on a show if he sees you and wants more grass lol). then in winter we will have them in the tractors in a stationary location (the tractors we made to have a plastic tote with a hole cut out the side for their bedding area - and the back is blocked with 3/4 of the sides with solid walls (old storage shed that got torn up in a wind storm metal) and then rest is hardwire fencing for openess and air flow - solid roof too).

Anyways was thinking of adding a grain to the mix we can get steamed rolled barley pretty cheap from the feed store and wheat also (oats are expensive if trying to get the rolled I already know they wont eat the other type). Barley or wheat would be our best choices if we had to choose one this way we can utilize it in our chicken/duck feed mix too (which is a grain, wild bird seed, and fishmeal - I've thought about just utilizing this as a rabbit feed also but unsure if rabbits can have fishmeal so haven't done so).

So a few questions...

1. which is better for rabbits when it comes to grains - barley or wheat? I've read on here where some rabbits won't eat the wheat. Just want to make sure if we go with a grain and they do eat it, it won't produce them to get fatty (if that makes sense as I think oats tend to do that sometimes but could be wrong lol)

2. Can rabbits have kelp meal? (we use it as a free choice mineral for the chickens/ducks and hopefully future goats lol)

3. I use to have a list of the safe foods that rabbits can eat, so we could do scraps with them (at least once a week or our chickens would probably stage a rebellion lol) but can't seem to find it - is there a place to find this list easily? I know apple wood is good for them and we give them our apple tree trimmings to chew on (the kids have done an applewood wood pile for them to give as needed lol)

Thanks in advance :bunnyhop:

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#2  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:39 pm


Wheat is best for rabbits in my opinion... [and I have not had any trouble with rabbits not eating rolled wheat]

natural-feeding-for-rabbits-f11.html
I feed all table scraps to rabbits, including cooked meat scraps...

I have added kelp meal, and granules when making my own feed mixes,... since I don't add salt to my 'home made feed" the extra salt in the kelp didn't cause problems... in fact they did very well with the addition of kelp..... [some "pet rabbit websites" say kelp should never be fed to rabbits, but then again.. they have many weird opinions.

Alder
Alfalfa
Apple, fruit, twigs/branches and leaves (not seeds)
Artichoke
Ash twigs/branches
Asparagus
Banana
Basil and blooms
Beets and tops
Birch twigs/branches
Blackberry, brambles, leaves, berries
Black cherry
Black Oil Sunflower Seeds
Blueberry, and bushes
Bluegrasses
Bok choy -
Borage and blooms
Broccoli -
Brussels sprouts -
Calendula (pot marigold)
Caraway
Carrots and tops (limit root,for overweight rabbits..- high sugar content, )
Cauliflower - limit due to possible gas build up
Celery
Celeriac
Cereal grains
Chamomile and blooms
Chervil
Chicory
Clovers and blooms
Coltsfoot
Comfrey
Coriander (Cilantro) and blooms
Corn
Cowberry, and bushes
Crabapple, all but the seeds
Crabgrass
Curly dock
Daisies and blooms
Dame's Rocket
Dandelion, whole plant and blooms
Day Lily and blooms
Dewberry
Dill and blooms
Dogwood
Echinacea

cabbage family plants be especially careful to feed small amounts at first as it causes gas

Endive - possible gas build up
Evening Primrose
Fennel and blooms
Fireweed
Gallberry
Garden Cress
Garden Nasturtium/Indian Cress
garlic
garlic chives
Gladiolus blooms
Goutweed
Grains (wheat, oat, barley, milo, millet)
Grapes, vines, leaves
Great Plantain and blooms
Great Willow Herb
Hazel twigs/branches
Holly
Horse nettle
Huckleberry, leaves, berries,
Hyssop and blooms
Jalapenos
Jasmine blooms
Jerusalem Artichoke
Juniper twigs/branches
Kale (curly and fodder) -possible gas build up
Kohlrabi - possible gas build up
Kudzu
Lady's Mantle
Lavender (plus, may facilitate kindling)
Lemon Balm
Lespedezas
Lettuce - dark green varieties are by far the best
Locust
Lovage
Mango
Maple twigs/branches
Marigold
Marjoram
Melon
Mulberry, branches and leaves
Mustard Greens and flowers
Nasturtium
Nettles, dried (but doesn't seem to bother the rabbits when fed green)
New jersey tea
Oats, whole, crimped or rolled ('old fashioned')
Okra
onion
Oranges
Orchard Grass/Hay
Oregano
Oxeye Daisy/Marguerite
Panicum
Papaya (if fresh, contains helpful enzymes that can help reduce fur block)
Parsley and parsley root (promotes favorable GI bacterial balance)
Parsnips
Paspalum

Purselane (Portulaca oleracea,
Peach (fruit only)
Pear fruit, twigs/branches and leaves (not seeds)
Peppermint and bee balm (but dries up a lactating doe)
Peppers (green, etc)
Pine (avoid feeding cones to breeding-age does)
Pineapple (if fresh, contains helpful enzymes that can help reduce fur block)
Plantain and blooms
Poison ivy
Poplar twigs/branches
Pot Marigold
Pumpkin
Radishes and tops
Ragweeds
Raspberry and leaves
Red maple
Romaine Lettuce (and other dark green and red lettuces)
Rose, canes, leaves and blooms
Rosemary and blooms
Rucola
Safflower
Sage and blooms
Salad Burnet and blooms
Sassafras
Sedges
Sheep sorrel
Small burnet and blooms

Speedwell
Spinach
Spruce twigs/branches
Strawberry, and plants
Sumac
Sunflowers, blooms and seeds
Tarragon
Thyme and blooms
Timothy Hay
Tomato (ripe fruit only)
Turnip and tops -possible gas build up
Vetches
Wheat grass
White oak
Wild carrot
Wild lettuce
Wild Pansy
Wild rye
Willow (all species
Wood Cranesbill/Woodland geranium
Zucchini
meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#3  Unread postby minibackyardfarmer » Thu Mar 14, 2019 4:12 pm


Thank you for that info.

Makes upping our own feed game a lot easier lol.

Now just gotta wait till she's ready to be bred and breed her with Cole till we get an offspring doe of qualities that we like and then breed that doe to yoyo for size.

Meat mutts are better than settling on prubreeds lol.

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#4  Unread postby GBov » Sun Mar 17, 2019 10:32 am


What location in the country are you? That helps us give advice tailored to your area. What works for me down here on the fossil sand dunes of Central Florida wouldn't work for someone in Canada. :lol:

One thing to remember, if your rabbits look good, feel good, act happy, and reproduce, you are doing a good job. It's hard not to doubt yourself when feeding differently to most people but your rabbits will tell you quick enough if you have something wrong.

I would suggest getting another doe or two though, two bucks to one doe is not the best ratio.

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#5  Unread postby minibackyardfarmer » Sun Jun 09, 2019 10:47 am


GBov wrote:What location in the country are you? That helps us give advice tailored to your area. What works for me down here on the fossil sand dunes of Central Florida wouldn't work for someone in Canada. :lol:

One thing to remember, if your rabbits look good, feel good, act happy, and reproduce, you are doing a good job. It's hard not to doubt yourself when feeding differently to most people but your rabbits will tell you quick enough if you have something wrong.

I would suggest getting another doe or two though, two bucks to one doe is not the best ratio.



Sorry for the late response. We are in Ohio (northeast ish part)

We ended up giving our doe and two bucks to a 4her to be able to go with breeds that work better. Finally found someone who sells meat rabbits lol.

So we now have 1 buck Flemish/satin, 2 does Flemish/satin, 1 doe Cali, and 1 doe that is either a harliquen (spell?) Or an American sable (got it from rural King and they weren't sure which but the oldest liked her and her blue eyes).

So we've been working with the new set up. In August we will try our first breeding minus the last two does as they are still you get then the rest and would rather wait till spring breeding to see if they have grown out better and to make sure mature.

I will say we are really liking the standard Flemish crosses for size and growth rate. We also saw the dress out of a few and the bone to meat ratio is awesome compared to if they were 100% Flemish.

The rabbit tractors are working out well. In the winter we will end up putting the tractors on top of our one hay/garden bed area with an electric fence around. Knock on wood most of our predator issues for even our bird livestock is winter time compared to other seasons.

All the rabbits were raised out on pellets. The mixes came from the same people and they were being raised on a pellet oat mix with hay as free choice.

So far they are doing really well on our
oat,
bird seed mix (millet, crack corn, and pretty much everything else for the most part that is on the pellet ingredient list),
kelp meal (any mineral circle or block they never wanted to touch and still hanging there lol),
hay (father-in-law does hay and it's an alfalfa etc mix and we barter eggs for hay so it's techn free lol)
grass
safe options outside the grass that we bring to them
and kitchen scraps (we eat whole foods) - chickens I don't think are too happy they have to share and not get as much now lol

I was thinking of adding sunflower seeds with the oil on them. But wasn't sure if this is a better winter additive. There is some already in the bird seed but not a lot.

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#6  Unread postby alforddm » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:12 pm


I highly recommend giant ragweed. I grow the stuff (well it really grows itself but I don't mow it and I spread it on purpose *gasp*). It's protein and digestible nutrition is as good as (even better than) alfalfa. My rabbits turn down willow and even mulberry for the ragweed.

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Re: Homemade mixed feed

Post Number:#7  Unread postby GBov » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:08 am


alforddm wrote:I highly recommend giant ragweed. I grow the stuff (well it really grows itself but I don't mow it and I spread it on purpose *gasp*). It's protein and digestible nutrition is as good as (even better than) alfalfa. My rabbits turn down willow and even mulberry for the ragweed.


Damn! I never would have thought to feed that stuff as I break out in an itchy rash if I touch it. :shock:

Hmmmmmm how to overcome, how to overcome?

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