I don't think I'd use mealworms as an entire protein source. Ferrets aren't insectivores. They can make good treats, but I wouldn't use them as a staple in the diet. Here are some good choices: chicken, rabbit, quail, duck, pork, beef, lamb, Cornish game hen, squab, venison, turkey.
That's all I can think of now. More variety is better.
When your ready to switch, sign up for a mentor. They can really help you through the entire process.
No. What Jackie meant to say was that ferrets are NOT insectivores. They are obligate carnivores and need a wide variety of animal protein sources. Meat, bones, organs, and whole prey (rodents, birds, rabbits, etc insects are not whole prey). They require a balance of muscle:bone:organ and an absolute minimum of 3 animal protein sources. They can eat insects (if you can even convince them they are food lol) and the mealies might make a good treat as Jackie suggested.
The mice and rats will be great. You want at LEAST one other animal source though. Perhaps rabbits? They are easy enough to breed! Other ideas are quail, pheasant, game hen - these are all smaller birds that you could raise at home. Ask Candiceboggs, and Virginia. They know a lot about raising birds if I am not mistaken. You can also supplement with meat from the store. The ones that Jackie listed are great, and if you can find it goat is very similar to lamb.
I agree that you'd definitely want something besides mealworms as those are really more of a treat than a staple in a ferret's diet. Three protein sources is a minimum and more is always better.
Mice and rats are both somewhat similar rodents so I'd try to make your third source something pretty different from those. Rabbit is definitely a good option or a bird of some kind- or both! Mine love rabbit and quail. Those are probably their two favorites although they're pretty found of mice when they're live.
On the note of live prey, I don't know which, if any, animals you're planning to feed live but as a word of caution, anything larger than a mouse has the potential to injure your ferrets. Even young rats can be fierce fighters.
Post by lizzysferrets on Feb 5, 2011 18:45:51 GMT -5
i wasn't sure about them. yes i know about feeding rats live could hurt my ferrets. to get my five ferrets to eat meal worms i dump some in a bowl put them in their cage and they all eat it. some are more willing to tryy new things. i will add chicken.
Alright just making sure. There are tons of videos on Youtube of people feeding all kinds of animals live to their ferrets so better safe than sorry.
When adding grocery store meats (chicken, beef, pork, goat, ect.) that aren't whole, make sure you also add the correct proportions of bone and organ meats. Unless of course you're feeding whole chickens that haven't been cleaned.
my question is how many mealworms youd have to feed in one day to = the oz needed for the ferrets (1-3oz for girls and 3-4oz for each boy) and what would it go towards? meat bone fur? theres a certain percentage of each that ferrets need
Well probably a lot but honestly ferrets don't get a lot of nutrients from mealworm so you wouldn't want to feed that many anyway. They don't have bones and any organs they have are negligible. I'm not sure they even count as meat- they're mostly exoskeleton. If anything I'd say they're just roughage. Maybe fat.