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Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Provide a well rounded diet without commercial feed, including discussions of the methods and merits of growing fodder.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#46  Unread postby OneAcreFarm » Mon Mar 28, 2011 9:15 pm


What about Trifolium dubium? Small hop clover....
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#47  Unread postby Anntann » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:11 am


scpankow wrote:What about Trifolium dubium? Small hop clover....

The small hop clover is sited as being important forage for deer and other herbivores, (as well as cattle), but it is susceptible to a mold that is highly toxic. Also, the sheep sites say to keep off the hop clover during breeding season..it appears that there is a link to poor fertility.

Maggie will know more about it :)

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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#48  Unread postby MaggieJ » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:46 am


Sorry, this time Maggie does not know more about it.

Clovers are valuable forage plants but they do have some issues.

http://www.library.illinois.edu/vex/tox ... alsike.htm

I would think that these problems would also apply to Trifolium dubium. There is remarkably little specific information available. Many good "weed" sites and books do not even mention it.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#49  Unread postby hoodat » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:55 am


HMMM. I've often cut my red clover in the early morning when the leaves are damp with dew or fog. I guess I'd better start waiting till the dew dries off. The only time I've seen photosenitization was with buckwheat greens. I let a piebald horse into buckwheat once and his white parts looked like they had been sunburned.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#50  Unread postby MaggieJ » Thu Mar 31, 2011 8:01 am


I have not been able to find out how these issues relate to rabbits, but better to err on the side of caution.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#51  Unread postby OneAcreFarm » Thu Mar 31, 2011 9:12 am


We have been feeding Pear leaves to our buns. I read somewhere that Sweet Gum leaves are ok, it that true? And what about Poplar? All species?
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#52  Unread postby MaggieJ » Thu Mar 31, 2011 10:35 am


As far as I know all poplars are fine. Sweet gum is mentioned as being not toxic to livestock but I have no first-hand knowledge of it.

You can find out a great deal about plants by googling the botanical name followed by the words toxicity rabbits.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#53  Unread postby hoodat » Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:24 pm


I recently discovered that my rabbits love prostrate knot weed. I can't find any reference to rabbit browse though I've seen it nipped off in the wild with what look like cottontail feeding on it. Do you have any information on this common garden weed?
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#54  Unread postby MaggieJ » Fri Apr 29, 2011 7:06 am


I have no personal experience of this plant, although it grows here in Ontario too. Did a quick search and came up with this website. The section quoted is way down in the article, which is why I copied it to here. Likely it is fine in the spring, but since there are concerns about nitrate toxicity, which generally builds up as the season goes on, I would not feed it later in the season. (Curly dock is a good example of this type of plant. The young leaves are safe and nutritious but it should not be fed once there are flower stalks because by then it has accumulated too high a nitrate level.)

http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plan ... i/all.html

IMPORTANCE TO WILDLIFE AND LIVESTOCK:
Prostrate knotweed is consumed by a variety of wildlife species as well as some livestock. However, in Australia, the death of several horses from nitrite toxicity was attributed to eating prostrate knotweed [85].

Palatability and/or nutritional value: Prostrate knotweed seeds are consumed by birds [32,138] including the American coot [14], mallard, killdeer [41], rock dove [114], sharp-tailed grouse [140], California quail [36], and American tree sparrow [12]. Leaves may be consumed by birds [138] such as the sharp-tailed grouse [140]. Small mammals may also consume parts of prostrate knotweed [101]. One black-tailed prairie dog stomach contained >20,000 prostrate knotweed seeds [86]. Eastern cottontails consumed prostrate knotweed in Missouri [87]. Prostrate knotweed is browsed by mule deer [38,75] and pronghorn [161,173]. Insects feed on the seeds [101] and nectar [22].

In Australia, prostrate knotweed is used as a fodder plant for pigs (review by [32]). Free-ranging domestic cattle consumed prostrate knotweed while foraging in ponderosa pine forests in central Colorado [38]. Domestic geese did not feed on prostrate knotweed in feeding trials, even when it was the only food available [170].
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#55  Unread postby hoodat » Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:20 am


Thanks a bunch. I could find very little online except how to get rid of it. It sounds as though it should only be fed in moderation once it's mature. Nitrite poisoning is not usually a problem when plants prone to it are not fed in large amounts. Their systems should be able to handle small amounts of nitrite. I guess I'll only mix in a little for variety.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#56  Unread postby Bryana » Sat May 14, 2011 4:03 pm


Is there any more information about feeding Frogbit(Limnobium spongia) to Rabbits? We have a ton of aquariums that get covered in it and if it can go to good use like feeding them rather than disposing of it, that would be awesome. It's an aquatic weed of sorts.... very fast growing and propagates like no other!

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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#57  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sat May 14, 2011 4:22 pm


Welcome to RabbitTalk, Bryana! :hi:

I have not been able to find any information on Frog-bit's edibility or toxicity so far. It is not likely a plant that animals like rabbits would eat in the wild and I would not use it for them without further study. It might be more useful for waterfowl.

One other use for it would be as a garden mulch. It should work great because it would not need composting to kill seeds, since they would not grow anyway in the relatively dryness of a garden.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#58  Unread postby hoodat » Sat May 21, 2011 12:10 pm


One problem with feeding any aquatic plants, especially from ponds or still water, is parasites. Several parasites have a cycle that includes an aquatic phase.
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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#59  Unread postby Beach Bunny » Fri May 27, 2011 10:13 am


I was thinking of planting hostas near my rabbits Dichondra the siver falls variety.I know wild rabbits like hosta not sure if dichondra is safe though?

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Re: Questions and comments about plant safety for rabbits.

Post Number:#60  Unread postby MaggieJ » Fri May 27, 2011 10:56 am


Is Dichonda a true hosta? I tried googling it and it didn't look like the hostas I know.
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