A number of cows have died in the last week after grazing Poa Aquatica, also known as swamp grass.
This tall grass-like plant stands up to 2.5m high in wet areas, swamps, pools and on edges of waterways.
The plant contains cyanide-type toxins and is not always poisonous. The toxin concentration is worse in spring when growth is rapid.
Poisonings are usually associated with hungry cattle that need to eat approximately 6-8 kg DM for it to be fatal at this time of year.
Although there is an antidote, death is very quick!
The larger the quantity ingested the less time there is to treat and possibly save the cow.
If you have this grass on your property we urge you to fence off these areas and restrict access to it for at least the next few months.
If you have any questions, or are concerned that this may already be an issue for you please contact the clinic.