Joyfirst
Green Thumb
Posts: 361
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:45 pm
Location: Southern California

Is it true that rabbit manure is the best?

I read this book, where the author says, that rabbit manure has a right proportions of nutrients for the veggies. And no other common animal manure has it. Do you know anything about that?

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7501
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 11:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

The manure of any herbivore can be used safely in a compost pile. The unique characteristic of rabbit manure is that it can be used directly in the garden bed.

However, when I approached two local rabbit rescue organizations in 2008 for such, what I received was a complete hodge-podge of rabbit manure, box litter, and timothy hay. A real mess, in other words. This stuff HAD to be composted, so I never got a chance to test the "directly in the garden bed" statement.

If you get such a mixture from a rabbit keeper or similar, know that the timothy hay takes well over a year to decompose. :x The box litter takes about a year.

The Search the Forum function at the top of the page will lead you to the many other discussions available here about manures in compost, if you need more information.

Happy gardening! :D

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

User avatar
nes
Green Thumb
Posts: 631
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 2:20 pm
Location: Rural Ottawa, ON

Unless your rabbits are messing on your carpet instead of in their litter box; the litter and it's contents don't come pre-separated unfortunately.

You could try a large scale breeder/farm, they sometimes keep rabbits in wire-bottom cages so the poo will fall through instead of giving them litter boxes.
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

Joyfirst
Green Thumb
Posts: 361
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:45 pm
Location: Southern California

Thank you guys. So it looks like it is a good stuff, but unfortunately doesn't come pure. Well, small amounts of bedding wouldn't be a problem, if I would put a layer of compost on top, would they?

crobi13
Senior Member
Posts: 208
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:18 pm
Location: Boston Zone 6

I have chickens and I use my chicken's poop & bedding as mulch for my garden beds. It insulates the ground & fertilizes it, too. It has worked great for me. The winter before last I used leaves as mulch on my bulb bed & I lost half of my bulbs. This winter, I used the chicken's bedding & I did not loose any bulbs :D .

I don't know what the difference is between chicken & rabbit poop but even with the bedding, it works.
Charlette
Wife, Mother, Gardner, Cook, Quilter, Banker and Tupperware Lady

User avatar
Gary350
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 5106
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 5:59 pm
Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

About 5 years ago I got a pickup truck load of rabbit manure. I got it from a guy that raises rabbits to sell. The rabbit manure was in piles under the many rows of rabbit cages. Pure 100% manure. I put it in my garden and the plants did fine. Nothing great but good anyway. It really added a lot of compost value to my soil. The next summer I think most of the manure value was totally gone but the compost was still about 1/2 there. The 3rd summer I couldn't tell rabbit manure had ever been there it completely composted away. Thats about typical with all compost it doesn't take long it is completely gone that is why I need continious supply of compost.

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7501
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 11:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

Table 1 in this document (https://attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/manures.html) gives an analysis of various herbivore manures. I've always read that chicken manure is considered "hot" and must be composted before use on edible plants, whereas rabbit manure can be used directly, without composting.

After examining Table 1, I'm forced to conclude that other factors must be in play as well, because rabbit manure is analyzed (albeit with caveats about variability due to diet and other conditions pertaining to the animals) as higher in all three--NPK--major nutrients than chicken manure. Maybe it's the...hmm :oops: ... "liquid" nature of bird waste vs. the "solid" nature of rabbit waste which produces the warnings?

At long last, I've had some access--although limited--to chicken waste for my compost. These rescued chickens are free-ranging bug eaters who also receive supplemental food from their keeper. The waste has been a few weeks old when I've received it (5-gallon bucket) and, although there has been a noticeable ammonia odor, it hasn't been the knock 'em dead odor I had been led to expect. *relief*

Gotta turn that compost soon and see what kinds of treasures await my plants! The BioStack bin has "eaten" the ingredients much more quickly these past few months, when I've had access to the chicken manure, than previously. :)

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

garden5
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3062
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:40 pm
Location: ohio

Well, I've heard that worm manure (castings) are actually the best manure.

On a side-note: I've heard that hay is considered a "green" and is supposed to compost more rapidly. What is it about Timothy hay that makes it take longer to compost?
There's something new growing in the Helpful Gardener Forum! Become a part of it here!

Joyfirst
Green Thumb
Posts: 361
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:45 pm
Location: Southern California

cynthia_h wrote: rabbit manure is analyzed (albeit with caveats about variability due to diet and other conditions pertaining to the animals) as higher in all three--NPK--major nutrients than chicken manure.
Exactly that's why is the most balanced nutrientwise from all common domestic animal manure.

Joyfirst
Green Thumb
Posts: 361
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:45 pm
Location: Southern California

Okey, I got an offer from guinee pig owner. Is their manure the same in terms of nutrients and slow release?

User avatar
1chichi
Full Member
Posts: 26
Joined: Sat Apr 17, 2010 1:56 am

Joyfirst wrote:Okey, I got an offer from guinee pig owner. Is their manure the same in terms of nutrients and slow release?
I have read somewhere that is good for the garden. It doesn't have to be composted. Some folks raise them to eat and allow them to run in the garden to fertilize it.

Return to “Vegetable Gardening Forum”