Nakkitset et al., 2008. Livest. Res. Rural Dev., 20 (supplement)
Seventy-two weaned rabbits, crossbreds between New Zealand White and the native breed, with an initial live weight of 731 g were distributed to four farmers, 18 rabbits to each farmer, in the Chiang Mai area. The rabbits on each farm were randomly assigned to three treatments according to a Randomized Complete Block Design with farms as block. The treatments were diets with three different foliages, Ruzi grass, head lettuce residue and Mimosa pigra. All rabbits were fed a basal diet of a commercial concentrate at 2% dry matter (DM) of body weight (BW). There were differences (P<0.001) in total feed DM intake and also in intake of foliages and concentrate. Feed intake was significantly lower for the rabbits offered Ruzi grass than for the other treatments. The finishing weight and daily gain during the thirteen weeks of the experiment were significantly higher for head lettuce residue and Mimosa pigra than for Ruzi grass. The finishing weight was 2.501 kg, 2.488 kg and 2.177 kg and the daily gain 19.4 g, 19.2 g and 15.9 g for the head lettuce residue, Mimosa pigra and Ruzi grass, respectively. Feed conversion ratio was lowest for the head lettuce residue diet, significantly lower than for Ruzi grass and Mimosa pigra (P<0.001). The highest net profit per kg live weight was obtained when feeding head lettuce residue, 40 Baht/kg BW, compared to 39 Baht and 36 Baht/kg BW when feeding Mimosa pigra and Ruzi grass, respectively.