Raising meat rabbits might sound like a drastic way to stretch your food dollar, but rabbit meat production is a realistic option for all families, whether you live in the suburbs, or a rural or even urban area.
Learn all about raising rabbits for meat, and how to build rabbit cages.
The best way to save money on groceries is to produce some of your own food.
This takes time, effort, and some expenses getting started, but is the perfect way to hedge against inflation in food prices, as well as economic conditions that may make it difficult for you to buy food, such as loss of job.
Raising meat rabbits is an excellent option for the beginner backyard food producer.
Rabbit meat production can be done on a small scale, providing 1-2 rabbits per week for a family of four at a time investment of 15-20 minutes per day.
Even the kids can get involved with raising rabbits for meat, whether through a 4H program or just as a family activity.
But why should you investigate raising meat rabbits?
Why not chickens, or goats, or a pig? Well, here are my top three reasons for raising rabbits for meat production:
A single female rabbit can produce 1000% of her body weight in food annuallyRabbits can be raised in confinement in small backyardsRabbit meat is very lean, perfect for cholesterol reducing diets, and tastes like poultry, not gameyRabbit meat simply tastes good. Use it in most recipes that call for chicken. In addition, rabbit pelts can be used in craft projects or used as a barter item.
How to Get Started Raising Meat Rabbits
A good way to get started raising rabbits for meat is to start with one buck and three does. This is a manageable way to ensure weekly rabbit meat production while getting familiar with the process. Rabbits can breed every 45-60 days, and litters are an average of 8-9 bunnies each.
The best place to find rabbits to buy is your local Craigslist under the Farm+Garden. This is also a good place to buy rabbit meat so you can try it in a recipe before you start raising meat rabbits.
Pellet rabbit feed is available commercially. In addition, your rabbits will need to supplement their diet with vegetables such as carrots, beets, or yams.
You could buy them, but why waste money? This makes an excellent weekend project for crafty husbands. Plans are available for how to build rabbit cages in the ebook recommended, below.
Earthworms are also great to raise alongside of rabbits. They convert rabbit droppings into food, and produce worm casings, which can then be used to fertilize your garden, and grow rabbit food. It all goes in one big circle.
All in all, I think rabbit meat production on a small scale is a wonderful way to reduce your food bills, eat healthier, and involve the kids in a series of great lessons. This is one way to help you stay a stay at home mom. Think about it.
Money Saving Resources
Use the following resources to help you on your path towards frugal food.
1. More pages on Stay-a-Stay-at-Home-Mom.com:
Menus for Kids
Start a Food Exchange
Raise Meat Rabbits
Raise Chickens in Your Backyard
Order Groceries Online
Frugal Grocery Shopping Tips