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The Environmental Husbandry Manual
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Individual Methods for Feeding Methods - Device

The feeding methods outlined in this section require prior preparation in terms of making devices for use by the animals, including items that must be opened or manipulated to obtain food, frames to hold food items, and containers that randomly release food such as insects.


Method Eighteen inch diameter puzzle ball. Originally designed as an enrichment device for pigs (Young et al 1994). The ball or barrel is filled with seeds, nuts, etc., which fall out randomly as the device is moved around by the animal.
Species Peccary, Babirusa, Tapir, Parrots.
Purpose Random-reward feeding device that requires the animal to move the feeder around until food drops out.
Pro The device can work for days before being completely emptied. Food balls of varying difficulty can be made to suit species ability.
Con Commercially available, but expensive. Does not work well in enclosures built on a slope, as it rolls to the bottom and stays there.
Improvements --
Comments The babirusa enclosure is located on a slope, and the female ignores the device it once it has rolled down the hill. Devices of varying size can be made, from small balls for birds, medium sized ones for primates and hoof-stock, to large barrels for bears and rhinos.
Frequency of Use Once per Week.
Ratings Usefulness 10/8
Convenience 7/9
Value For Money 5/7
Range of Users 4/4
Contributed By Hoof-Stock Section / Bird Section

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