Rutabaga (Brassica napobrassica): Report by Several University Extensions- HIGH PROTEIN

Help Support RabbitTalk:

MuddyFarms

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 13, 2021
Messages
516
Reaction score
415
Location
NW US
Check out the uses section in this report about Rutabaga. Tops can have 20-25% crude protein, while the roots have 10-14% crude protein. Brassicas are supposed to be used with caution when fed to rabbits, but I have read from members on this site that they have had success doing it in small amounts and by gradually getting their rabbits accustomed to it. The section in the report about harvesting lists caution about keeping the animals from eating too much of it, since it is such a high-quality forage that it must be considered a concentrate feed. Definitely worth reading to understand it's value for animals!

This report mentions the plant as being drought-tolerant and cold-hardy, as well.

 

MnCanary

Well-known member
Joined
May 15, 2010
Messages
120
Reaction score
107
Location
central Kentucky USA
Thanks for posting this!

Every year there is a Rutabaga Days festival in Askov, MN. Including contests, a dance etc. And Rutabaga ice cream.
 

arachyd

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 27, 2010
Messages
623
Reaction score
121
Location
NJ
Please be very careful feeding any brassica. Rabbits have completely different reactions to it. I had given a small amount of cauliflower leaf to three of my rabbits years ago. One got diarrhea, one had no reaction and one died of bloat/stasis.
 

MnCanary

Well-known member
Joined
May 15, 2010
Messages
120
Reaction score
107
Location
central Kentucky USA
Please be very careful feeding any brassica. Rabbits have completely different reactions to it. I had given a small amount of cauliflower leaf to three of my rabbits years ago. One got diarrhea, one had no reaction and one died of bloat/stasis.
I read about brassicas and rabbits, and I believe what you're saying. But....I've fed brassicas rather freely for a long while without seeing any problems. Except I need to pull my hand away quickly. They really dive in.
 

Rabbits by Accident

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 22, 2021
Messages
314
Reaction score
323
Location
Fort Worth, TX
Every time I read these posts about what to feed rabbits I wonder if the fact that Tamuk are a composite rabbit makes them much hardier than a normal purebred type rabbit. Because I feed mine, even tiny babies, all kinds of things and I never think about it until later and go oh crap I probably shouldn't have given them that.
 

Zee-Man

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 7, 2020
Messages
187
Reaction score
201
Location
Delaware, USA
Brassicas are a natural and plentiful source of vitamin K. Clover (specially Red) is not a brassica, but is ,also rich in K. Vitamin K is necessary for all kinds of metabolic processes, It also happens to be a blood thinner. In humans if you are are already using a blood thinner you should be cautious about eating lots of brassicas. I give my rabbits cabbage once in a while, usually when I haven't finished a head in a timely fashion. I am too stingy with broccoli, but I have given that to them on occasion. Wintercress is a favorite of mine for the table, but the rabbits also get it. Over winter I will frequently get kale or collards for the rabbits since they can often be had cheaply. I've given thought to growing chard for late year forage, but have never done it. I do grow turnips (cousin to rutabaga) for that reason. Well, the brassica family is huge so the list could go on a lot longer.

I think that the problem with bloat and diarrhea may be due more to gut flora than the species. Brassicas are an excellent media for growing lacto bacters. They are also good sources of dietary fiber. Add them together and to a gut that isn't yet infected and balance with the needed flora and that spells distress for any creature. One of the reason Sunchokes (not brassica) are often called farti-chokes is the phenols in them that are very conducive to lacto bacters. Eat them without pickling or cooking and your gut will bloom and that can result in painful gas. So it is with brassicas.

Now, I give my rabbits a broad range of green forage, so their gut flora is very diverse. Perhaps those rabbits that have succumbed to bloat and such after eating brassicas don't have such a diverse and balanced gut flora.
 
Last edited:

Latest posts

Top