Ridge gourd has been mostly a failure. They will eat the insides, if there is nothing else to excite them. Otherwise, it is mostly ignored.
Okra was also a complete failure.
Will report on bottle gourd tomorrow.
Then again, I have really picky brats.
For people in India reading this, in case you don't know:
bottle gourd - lauki
ridge gourd - turaii
bitter gourd - karela
The bottle gourd is not as appreciated when it dries out, however, so I'm making sure it's wet when I serve it, to prolong the drying out process.
Our newest experiment is "kohlrabi", which is called "ganth gobi" in Hindi. It is also a huge success. This is so exciting for us!
Sahil, since you're the only one on here that is in India at the moment, I strongly suggest you try these out! If there is anything nifty and different that is working for you, please let us know, ya?
Well Haven't tried all the mentioned gourds. Coriander, Tomato, Cucumber, Kakri (Don't know the english name) watermelon they like. Other things too. Can't recall them as my mind is kinda blocked at the moment. Tired of my books.
Lauki has been a success with me, and I'm happy about that. Cucumbers are their favorite item, and I'm sure if they like that, they will like Kakri, though I don't know what it is called in English. I'll post as soon as I find out.
My boys also enjoy pomegranate and mausambi (I think it's called sweet lime?). They like methi leaf (fenugreek), but I find that it gives a methi-like smell to their urine, so I don't give it anymore.
I've experimented a lot, because they are so incredibly picky.
Well pampered she is. She can very well do it.
I thought pomegranate would choke her, but since you have tried will give it to her. It is very nutritious. Mausambi, will try that also. Methi (coriander leaves), she loves it. if methi-like smell is not a medical problem, what wrong with the scented pee ;)
Once had kept Guava tree's twig in her cage, with a few leaves on it. She chewed on the twig but didn't touch the leaves until they were dry. When I got up in the morning I saw her biting the dry leaves. I wasn't sure about it, as in it was safe for her, I kept it outside. She took out her li'l nose out of the cage to get a hold on the leaves. :)
I just received an email from a fellow GLer, who is based in Mumbai. It reminded me that perhaps I should give some updated information in this thread.
I could swear I mentioned it, but can't find the post. SO, coroplast is available here under the name of "sun board" or "sign board", and available in different thicknesses (4mm or 5mm is good). It's easy to find in wholesale packing and plastics shops, or some sign making shops will direct you in the right direction. The sign shops probably won't sell to you.
As for the cubes, I use a small dog pen that was custom made into the size I wanted, and is about a foot high. Most bigger pet shops will be able to make this for you! The cubes are now available in luxury home furnishing shops, but incredibly expensive.
I tried to look into having Oxbow International open an account in India, but couldn't find a shop that was interested. If you know of an interested vendor, let me know, and I will send you the application. In Mumbai, there are many exporting companies that grow Timothy hay and wheat grass, but these items have to be bought in bulk (1 ton). If approached directly, perhaps a deal can be made?
Do some research online!
There is no local company, but many high end pet shops carry Sunseed and Verse-laga (not sure of the spelling). Make sure the pellets look clean, and are free of any seeds and colored bits. These are not the best brands, but something is better than nothing! Ebay will deliver to India, if you have a credit card to buy online!
Fleece and bedding:
Fleece is not usually sold by the meter here, but it can be bought in blanket form from baby shops, or larger department stores (e.g. Big Bazaar). Wash the blanket a few times, and then check for wicking. Make sure the fleece is 100%polyester, and that the ink does not run.
Please make sure to use good quality absorbent towels under the fleece, or the moisture will not wick. I always keep mats (the woven floor mats that can be bought for about Rs.10) in the high traffic areas, and change them out daily. Humidity can get high, and more moisture can be harmful to piggies' health!
In recent times, there have been more and more reports of chemicals being used in the fruits. Piggies in my house no longer get sweet treats, aside from carrot. Please buy your veggies from a trusted vendor. If there is an organic vegetable shop near you, all the better!
I'll add on as I remember what other obstacles were faced.
Good luck to all the fellow piggy slaves in India!
Thanks for the help. Please let me know whether we can feed them with paddy straw. When I say Wheat barn, it is the barn (waste) we get after grinding the wheat, and sieving the flour, the light brown colour waste. Even ragi powder can be mixed with it. Is this the website( the online purchase) from India, name please.
- Supporter in '13
Luckily in India, the wheat berries (seeds) are available every where. I'm a tad allergic to the grass, so don't grow it in my house. I can get it from Namdhari's or Nilgiris outlets, though! If you have a "Booster Juice" nearby, ask them who their wheat grass supplier is. I did the same, and got grass flats for a pretty decent price.
About the corn husks, most the pesticides used are present in the husks and silks. If you are getting the corn from a trusted vendor, go for it! Make sure to wash VERY well.
Where are you located?
Also a point I forgot to mention about pellets: Many local stores are starting to market their own pellets - do NOT use them. The ingredients are generally not listed, and the quality of the pelleted food is horrendous!
The sun board:
Some pictures of how I make my cage, along with accessories that were all bought in India (except the colorful ball for chewing):
The pouch is made from a t-shirt, and hand sewn since I don't have a sewing machine. It works great! It may not be as good or pretty as the snuggly pouches in other countries, but good enough!
Clean cages make happy piggies:
I used to have a cardboard cage before I got the coroplast and fence. If anyone wants to see that setup, let me know!
Lynx, I have no idea how big these pictures are, I sure hope they turn out alright.