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Plant poisonings in ruminants and equidae in the Sertão of Paraiba, Brazil

A survey of plant poisoning in ruminants and equidae was conducted in 20 municipalities of the semiarid region of the Sertão Paraibano. Fifty farmers and 11 veterinary practitioners were interviewed. Ipomoea asarifolia and Mascagnia rigida are the most important poisonous plants in the region. Indigofera suffruticosa, the cianogenic plants (Sorghum vulgare, Piptadenia macrocarpa, and Manihot spp.), Mimosa tenuiflora, Aspidosperma pyrifolium and Crotalaria retusa cause also important intoxications in the area. Sporadic outbreaks of poisonings by Ricinus communis, Enterolobium contortisiliquum, Prosopis juliflora and Brachiaria decumbens were also mentioned. Some farmers mentioned that Ziziphus joazeiro, Passiflora foetida, Caesalpina ferrea and Crescentia cujete cause abortion. The fruits of Crescentia cujete were administered to two pregnant goats causing perinatal mortality and abortion. The peels of the beans Phaseolus vulgaris and Vigna unguiculata, and the leaves of Licania rigida are associated with ruminal impactation in cattle. The fruits of Mangifera indica (mango) and Anacardium occidentale (cashew) are associated with ethanol poisoning in cattle. Dalechampia sp. and Croton sp. were also mentioned as possible toxic plants in the region.

Poisonous plants; semiarid; ruminants; equidae; plant poisonings

Colégio Brasileiro de Patologia Animal - CBPA Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira, Caixa Postal 74.591, 23890-000 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil, Tel./Fax: (55 21) 2682-1081 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil