Poisonous Plants for Louisiana Livestock in the Fall

Christine Navarre, Nicholson, Steven S.  |  7/25/2005 8:37:44 PM

Coffeesenna (Senna occidentalis), formerly Cassia occidentalis, causes muscle damage in cattle. Symptoms include brown urine and weakness. Ingestion can be fatal.

Sicklepod (Senna obtusifolia) contains a muscle poison like coffeesenna, but it's not quite as toxic. Yearling-age cattle are especially apt to eat several pounds. Symptoms include brown urine and immobility. Ingestion can be fatal.

Dallisgrass seed heads -- Note swollen seeds that are black, brown or orange. These seeds contain compounds that cause nervousness, staggering and tremors in livestock. Most animals will recover.

Cattle may eat excessive amounts of acorns. They can cause kidney failure and constipation. Diarrhea can come later. Rarely, horses may consume a toxic amount and develop acute, severe colic.

Lantana camara is an ornamental found statewide. It is now common to canal banks and sandy islands across coastal Louisiana. Lantana a very toxic plant that causes liver damage, kidney damage and photodermatitis.

Perilla mint (Perilla frutescens) is a common weed that likes shade. It has a square stem and a purple tint to the underside of its leaves. A few pounds of perilla mint cause respiratory distress in cattle and is often fatal.

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