Kits wasting feed!

Sammbalina

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I have an 8 week old litter of 9 silver fox rabbits that I just moved out of momma's cage and into 2 cages, 4 boys in one, 5 girls in the other (until I can get more cages built). I had hoped that this would solve my problem, but apparently not. The little fluff balls completely empty out their j-feeders in a matter of minutes by digging the food out. They have wasted probably more than half a bag of feed over the last 2 weeks because they can't just eat it! Every time I go to check on them they are crowding the front of the cages wanting food, and there is a huge pile of it under the cage where it fell through. If I had pigs or chickens I wouldn't be so frustrated by this, but I don't. How in the world do you keep the darned critters from digging it all out?!?! Neither mom nor dad do it, just the babies. I tried a tray under the feeder, which worked until they peed in it, then they would no longer eat from it. I'm thinking of trying pvc pipe feeders, so they have to reach down into an elbow to get at the food, and maybe won't be able to dig as much out. If I can't figure out how to keep them from wasting so much I may have to stop raising rabbits, and this is my first litter! I really want to raise rabbits, but I would rather put my money towards something higher on my priority list and that doesn't waste more than they eat. I cleaned out the catch bin under momma's cage after I moved them out yesterday and it was probably 90% food and 10% poo!
 

promiseacres

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Have you added anything to it? Only when I was top dressing BOSS or calf manna was it an issue. I changed to feed in the morning and "extras" in the evening. I do have a couple feeders that help reduce this in an adult who likes to do this. It's a two part j feeder, and is deeper than the others plus the feed comes thru slower.
 

Larsen Poultry Ranch

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Can you put an insert in the feeder? Like the kind they make to keep chickens from scratching out all their feed? I have only had one rabbit do that and she stopped within the last few months. I don't know what changed to make her stop, so I'm not sure if/when she's going to start again.
 

animalmom

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I've had good luck with several crock feeders in the cage with kits so that you don't have everyone trying to eat out of one container. Try feeding them smaller amounts more often IF that works with your schedule. You know they do this on purpose to drive you to distraction. :)
 

Beekissed

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A piece of chicken wire over the mouth of your J feeder will do the trick. They can reach their muzzles through but can't really root around in there and dig out feed. Also, don't fill your feeder....they don't need continuous feed in there. Give them a measured amount, some fresh hay in a hay bin(also a piece of chicken wire up in the corner of a cage) and that should be enough. If they run out before evening and it's not from wasting it, then give them more the next day but never more than they will eat in a day's time. That will reduce the waste of feed.
 
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