Thursday, February 24, 2011

UC reminds of oak toxicity potential

From the California Cattlemen's Association:

After a few warm weeks throughout the state this winter and the news of more winter storms on the way, CCA wants to pass on information from the University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) that is important for cattle producers to be aware of.

According to an article from John Maas, DVM, published in the January 2008 issue of the California Cattleman magazine, there are more than 50 common species of oak trees in California all containing some levels of the chemicals that can cause problems in cattle. Maas says oak buds, young leaves and fresh acorns have the highest level of toxins. Many oak trees in California have already began to bud in the warmth of early spring. As seen in past years, the threat of cold weather, especially snow in the foothills, can cause these buds to fall off trees and into the hay or forage on the ground, and subsequently may be eaten by livestock, causing a wide variety of cattle health problems.

To read the article in its entirety click here. You may also learn more about this problem and how you can best avoid it by contacting your local UCCE Livestock Farm Advisor.

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