Remembering that “rabbits are not only valuable fur”, many farmers are engaged in this type of animal husbandry. In order for the animals to actively “put on weight”, and their wool was silky, the right conditions are very important. Many breeders prefer to make cages for rabbits with their own hands, according to the size of the enclosures with the area of the rabbit farm. Learn how to build a rabbit and a mini-farm for breeding rabbits, you will learn from this article.
Tiered mini-farm and rabbit breeding cages
The multi-tiered mini-farm technique for rabbits is based on the fact that the physiology of animals allows them not to be afraid of the frost, but on the contrary, a lower temperature is only beneficial for them. The fact is that the rabbit has very weak lungs, which weigh only 35 g, whereas the hare of the same size weighs 500 g. The paradox is that in a warm room the rabbit lacks oxygen, which is too much for him in the cold . In addition, in the cold, these animals will not be so much annoyed by various insects that are carriers of many diseases.
Based on these facts, a special author’s cage design was developed for a mini-farm for rabbits, only one nest is insulated in it – the mother liquor, and the cage is installed in an open area.
Before you make a farm for rabbits on the multi-tiered principle, you need to cut a piece of galvanized iron, set the box on it. This will be the mother liquor. From the bottom to the bottom you need to attach a medical heating pad EG-1 and press it with a five-layer plywood. From above, you need to put a little hay. This mother liquor is placed in a cage for 10-15 days before the roundabout, and for 2 days it is necessary to turn on the heater for reduced mode through a transformer. This mode must be maintained for 5-8 days depending on the outside air temperature. Usually, before giving birth, the female herself begins to warm the nest, pulling down from her skin. Everything happens in the natural mode and in such conditions not a single newborn rabbit (and they are born into the world naked and blind) does not die. A similar practice was made even with the strongest frost – up to 47 ° C.
The mother cage must be located below the general level of sex, which is consistent with the instincts of the female, which cause the rabbit to climb into the hole, that is, to the lowest place.
In order for the rabbits to grow faster, you need a device for heating water in the winter. To create it, you will need a conventional 220 V boiler and step-down transformer, as well as another trick – you need to turn the canister with water down by its neck and fix it in this position between two planks. Thanks to this simple adaptation, rabbits will be able to drink warm water in winter and throughout the year in plenty, because the bowl will always be filled with water.
The problem of feeding on a farm for rabbits, made by hand on a multi-tiered principle, is solved as follows: bunker feeders for compound feed are installed in the cage design. Root feeders should be designed so that rabbits can eat at any time of day, because unlike other animals, their stomach resembles a plastic bag: it does not contain muscles and can push food only as new portions of it arrive. It is in this connection that rabbits eat little by little, but very often – 70-80 times a day. This need must be met.
Because of this, almost half of the rabbits, too early divorced from the mother, die. In order to reduce losses, it is recommended to remove the young from the female not in 30-45 days, as is customary, but after 80-90 days. As a result, the female has only three or four of them, instead of eight, but it turns out to be more profitable, because in this case all the remaining rabbits survive. If the national average for 1 kg of weight gain is 16 kg of feed, then this farm has to spend about 3.5 kg of feed. At the same time, it takes about 8 months for a rabbit to reach a weight of 4–5 kg under generally accepted conditions, however, this farm only needs 120 days. In the normal mode, the loss of young stock makes up almost a third of the total, and in the conditions of this farm, the losses are practically excluded.
In the proposed mini-farm you can breed and keep rabbits of any breed. At the heart of this farm is a two-tier cell module. If there are many rabbits, then you can make several such cells united by a common roof. The device of this farm allows you to take care of animals only once a week, for example, on weekends. These days, you can fill the feeders with hay, root crops or mixed fodder, pour water over the canister auto-drinkers with heating. In addition, the cage floor of cages with funnel-shaped pitfall shafts for manure allows you to get rid of the constant cleanings and cleanings, because the manure is automatically removed from the cells through the funnels.
Before you start setting up a mini-farm, familiarize yourself with how to make cages of various designs for rabbits.
How to make a two-tier rabbit cage
The cost of building a two-tier cage for breeding rabbits with their own hands is not very large, since its construction is simple, moreover, they pay off in the first months of operation. So, to make a cage for rabbits, two sheets of fibreboard, two sheets of three-layer plywood, four beams (60 X 100 mm), 50 battens, roofing material (4 x 2 m) for pallets, as well as nails and paint are required. In addition, for the completion of the cage, two deep enameled bowls (220 mm in diameter), a tank-manure collector about 300 mm high, two electric boilers VPI-03 (household, immersion type), step-down transformers (220 x 127 V, 4 pieces per 7-8 cells), cans (4 pieces, you can use 5-liter polyethylene from under the "Tosol").
Cells should be positioned with the orientation to the cardinal points: a blank, closed wall (with boxes of a nursery and feeding troughs) should be directed to the north side in order to protect animals from cold winds; the roof needs to be made so that it hangs 90 cm from the north, and 60 cm from the south, and the roof on the western and eastern sides should be flush with the projecting beams.
Look at the photo: a rabbit cage, made by hand on the bunk principle, consists of a frame-support, the lower and upper tiers. You can equip it with a roof of roofing material. It is advisable to use a transparent or translucent material, in extreme cases, you can simply do with roofing material.
The upper tier of such an improvised cage for rabbits will be jigging, that is, it will serve for the rearing of rabbits after the suction period. This room should be made of different cells in the floor space: one of them should exceed the frame dimensions. Males will live in this part, but if the number of females in the vicinity is predominant, then a large cell must be given to them. Otsadochny tier is required to be divided into two halves with the help of the feed feeder working on both sides. Also here you need to install a common canister drinker. Each compartment should also have a folding feeder for root crops, a nursery for grass and hay, made in the form of an opening door. The door must also be attached to the auto-drinker. The floor of this tier should be horizontal. It can be typed from wooden slats, at an angle of 45 °, so that the bunnies cannot damage their legs. All walls and doors of the cell, with the exception of the north side, must be made of lattice.
Below is the uterine tier. It should consist of two compartments – nesting and walking, and also include the same elements that were described for the upper tier. Nest compartment should have a removable part of the floor. It should be located below the rest of the tier. This part will be placed in front of the motherland queen, where the rabbit will go on its own, obeying the normal instinct. The rest of the nesting compartment should be stationary. It should be provided with a wall with a manhole, which, if necessary, it will be possible to overlap the valve. The door to the nest compartment is better to mount with hinges below, so that when opening (or tilting), it forms a platform.
The walking compartment should be provided with a slatted floor, only here the slats should be placed in the opposite direction, i.e. perpendicular to the direction of the upper tier set. This will increase the rigidity of the whole structure as a whole. In the area of walking it is necessary to place a canister drinker, a folding feeder for root crops and a bunker feeder. The manger door here should be hung on the rack of the rear wall of the walk. To install the auto drinker the door must also be mounted.
In the floor of the compartment for walking you need to make a window for the conical end of the pitched shaft, which is mounted under the floor of the upper tier. The pitched shaft of the lower tier should communicate with the bunker, equipped with a removable door and a container for collecting manure. Thus, inspection and periodic cleaning of the mines will be carried out through special doors, which will also make containers available for the utilization of feed flour. The tanks themselves should be located under the inclined grids of the feed feeders.
The lower part of the cell frame should contain an electrical compartment. At the same time, this compartment can also serve as a lockable room for jigging rabbits, and, say, for storing valuable tools, etc. Nearby it is recommended to place a shelf for various accessories required for the care of the cage.
In the middle of the cage for breeding rabbits, you can arrange a folding stand-bench, on which it will be convenient to stand when working with the upper tier of the cage, it can also be used simply for recreation.
To feed troughs conveniently, you need to make them protruding or leaning out. In the latter case, the root feeders will be opened by turning on themselves and held in this position by the upper door, which can be folded to turn the feeder completely and turn it into a table. The design of the feed mixer should consist of a body with windows for feeding the rabbits, as well as a pallet. The pallet must be made of a fine-meshed mesh, which will pass the flour to a pull-out container for the subsequent disposal of this litter.
All folding elements of the cage must be provided with handles, hinges and latches, and also, if necessary, build-in mortise locks. The lateral and anterior walls of the cage should be tightened with a fine mesh, the working side of the nursery can be tightened with a coarse mesh.
A mini-farm device based on the above cells does not require a large area: one cell will occupy only 1.4 m2 if you arrange a two-row mini-shed of eight cells with a distance of 70 cm between them (measuring the distance along the legs) and passing 110 cm, the total area will be less than 25m2.
At the same time, up to twenty-five animals can be kept in one cage at a time: a rabbit with a new okrol will be located in the lower tier, and the previous offspring will be located in the upper tier. If you have ten females in eight cages (two cages should have the upper uterus and one for the male), then you will be able to achieve a daily output of one rabbit weighing about 4.5 kg.
For several years, the bunk cells were exploited on an experimental farm and fully justified their profitability and high profitability. So their use in amateur rabbit breeding is recommended for all novice farmers.
Single-tier cages for rabbits do it yourself (with photo)
For the external keeping of rabbits in the cellular system, double single-tier cages, created by employees of the Research Institute of Fur Breeding and Rabbit Breeding, are the most common.
The length of these structures should be 220-240 cm, and width – 65 cm, the height of the front wall (from the floor to the roof) can vary from 50 to 60 cm, and the height of the back wall is 35 cm. The roof should be lean-to with a visor that can protrude 20 cm forward and 10 cm at the sides.
On both sides of the structure it is necessary to arrange two permanent nest compartments.
Pay attention to the photo: in such a homemade rabbit cage, the floor must be solid and wooden.
In the remainder of the cage, two fodder compartments should be constructed, where the floor is made of metal mesh. The mesh size of the grid should be 18 x 18 mm or 16 x 48 mm. Then the wooden slats are applied on the grid 2 cm wide with a distance of 1.5-1.8 cm between them.
The correct cage for rabbits should have a partition with a manhole 17 cm wide and 20 cm high between the nesting and aft compartments. In order for the rabbits to not get from the nesting compartment into the aft one, it is necessary to make this hole at a height of 10-15 cm from the floor.
From the front of the cage, two mesh doors should be hung, which will lead to the feed compartments, as well as two solid plank doors to the breeding compartments. On those doors that lead to the aft compartment, you need to hang removable feeders and drinkers.
And for the distribution of roughage, it is necessary to install a nursery made of two wooden frames covered with a net between the feed compartments. The mesh size of the mesh can be 20 x 50 mm. The lower ends of these frames should be aligned, and the upper ones should be pushed to the sides of the feed compartments of the cells. Thus, you get a V-shaped nursery, in which will be distributed rough food.
For the construction of a double single-tier cage, lumber is required – 0.2 m3, a metal grid with 18 × 18 mm cells (or a fully welded grid with 16 x 48 mm cells) – 1.3 m2, and a grid with 35 x 35 mm cells (or a grid with 24 x 48 mm) – 0.6 m2.
Making the right cages for rabbits with enclosures
Before you make a cage for rabbits with an aviary, stock up on the necessary number of nets. Such cages are very convenient for keeping adult rabbits and single and twin cages set up from youngsters with a reticule-free range.
The double cage with an open-air cage has the following dimensions: length – 2 m, width – 1.65 m, with the width of the cage only – 0.65 m, height of the front wall – 0.75 m, height of the back wall and the enclosure – 0.6 m .
You need to make a manhole from the cage into the walking hill, which can be blocked by an inserted fence. The floor in the cells must be made of a grid with a cell size of 18 x 18 or 16 x 48 mm. During rounding and in the cold period, it is recommended to lay solid wooden shields on the mesh floor.
Homemade cage for young rabbits (with photo)
For the maintenance of young stock it is desirable to use group cells. They should be made on the basis of a wooden frame.
The back and side walls, as well as the roof of the cage for young rabbits, should be sheathed with wood, and the net should be tied onto the front wall and floor.
The roof can be made of tesa. It is made with a visor (the size of the protruding part – 30 cm). The length of the cells should be 2-4 m, and the width – 1 m, the height of the front wall should be 0.5 m, and the back – 0.4 m.
In the front wall, you need to install two doors, on which you need to attach self-tilting feeders and drinkers, as well as a nursery for hay and grass.
Construction of a shed for keeping rabbits according to the shed system
Installing cells in the open air is not always convenient, because then you have to process them in the rain or snow, in the wind and in the cold.
This is especially inconvenient when there is no mechanization of the distribution of feed and water. It is much better to use the open view of the shed maintenance of rabbits.
The shedding system for keeping rabbits is keeping animals in the same room, but in different cells. By itself, the shed is a shed with a frame made of wood, metal or reinforced concrete.
The side walls in this construction are the cells themselves, which are installed with facades inward in two tiers. The end walls of the cages with the shed maintenance of rabbits are made in the form of double doors.
When building a rabbit shed for a barn, it is better to use a gable roof, slightly lifting it above the cages. It looks like a lantern with glazed walls.
In such a sede, rabbits will be reliably protected from rain, snow and, of course, wind. For the convenience of feeding the feeds, you can mount a mobile overhead road in which the containers with the feeds will be placed.
How to build an rabbitry: building an rabbitry with your own hands
The rabbitry with his own hands can be built from logs, boards or bricks. The walls of the rabbitry with a single-sided roof must be made dense, without cracks, so that there are no drafts that rabbits are afraid of, and also to prevent the penetration of mice, rats and larger predators. The floor of the shed should also be made tight and without cracks, with a slight bias towards the entrance. This bias will facilitate the cleaning rabbit.
When building an rabbit with your own hands, it is very important that the room is sufficiently bright and well ventilated. After all, it is known that the lack of light and clean air is the main cause of the “puffiness” of rabbits, that is, their hair is greatly deteriorated: the down becomes rare and thin. In order to provide the rabbit with air and light, it is necessary to mount windows, ventilation pipes and additional openings in it. The roof of the shed in this case is made shed. This design will allow the roof to be used in the summer as an additional platform for drying hay rabbits for the winter.
To conveniently raise the grass on the roof, you can use the ladder attached to the canopy of the porch. Here, over the canopy, you should mount the window in the attic, where you can lay ready hay.
Outside the barn near the door you need to arrange a pit for the storage and storage of manure. This pit should be veneered and made closable. In the wall of the shed above the pit it is necessary to make a closing hatch. In the barn you can also select a small area for storing feed and working equipment. Hay and brooms can be stored in the hayloft, which communicates with the rabbit’s room by an internal hatch and stairs. Access to the hayloft should also be outside the rabbitry.
On the southern side of the rabbitry, you can arrange summer walking for the young, sheathed with a fine-meshed net. Doors in the rabbitry must be made double: the first must be very dense, it can be made of boards, and the second is best done from the grid, stretched over the frame.
In summer, you can only close the shed with a mesh door, so that inside there is additional ventilation and lighting.
The rabbit’s design provides for an arrangement in the center of the cage of the breeding stock, and along the walls – enclosures for the young. To make full use of rabbit area, you need to install the cells in two or three tiers. It is only important to ensure that urine and feces do not enter the lower cells. It is advisable to provide such cages for rabbits with special devices for laying feed and water supply with the expectation of 1-2 weeks.
How to build your own group cell for breeding rabbits
Before you build a group cage for rabbits, stock up on building materials at the rate of the number of individuals. Such cells can be made from a variety of building materials. The main requirements that apply to the cage: they must be designed for the content of rabbits with laying the feed for 1-2 weeks. The uterine compartment should have dimensions of 40 x 70 x 60 cm, and the dimensions of the light compartment should be 60 x 70 x 60 cm.
The bright compartment should be used to install day nurseries for hay, grass, feeders and car drinkers. Here you need to install a rack or mesh grid at a height of 10-15 cm above the floor, and in the uterine compartment the same grid – at a height of 5-10 cm above the floor.
This space between the floor and the grate will ensure accumulation of manure in this place and will ensure cleanliness in the cage. Once a month, the accumulated manure needs to be cleaned, and in the summer it should be done more often, otherwise because of the heat, gases that are harmful to rabbits will form more actively in it, and also worms can appear.
Rack flooring in the dark uterine compartment of the cell is done below to avoid drafts. It is recommended to remove the grille from the nest compartment before turning it around or turn it over so that it lies flat on the floor of the cage. Then on it you need to put the nest box or put a rich litter.
Two feeders should be installed in the cage: one for feed, the other for succulent feed, waste from the table and wet mash. These feeders should be placed along the rear wall of the aft compartment.
Both troughs should be closed from above with a common lid 2-3 m wide and from the creche to the partition. On this cover, the bunny will be able to rest from the grown-up little bunnies.
For keeping adult rabbits, a cage with two compartments and standard sizes is required: the total cage length is 120 cm, width is 70 cm, and height is 60 cm. Young stock requires more spacious enclosures.
The cage under them should also contain two compartments, which will facilitate its cleaning, since it will be possible to place all the rabbits in one compartment, and the other at this time will be able to be cleaned. According to the rules for group keeping of young stock after jigging, each rabbit needs 0.15-0.2 m2 of area on the netting floor of the enclosure, and on a solid wooden floor – 0.2-0.3 m2.
If the size of the cage in this case remains standard, then the feeders for them should be increased by 5-10 times, because the young animals feed more actively.
To lay roughage, it is necessary to arrange a nursery outside the cage, and inside the cage feed compartment, capacious grain, mixed fodder, succulent fodder and grain waste are suspended. It is better to install these feeders on the back wall of the cage, on the partition, and the auto-drinker should also be placed here.