NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Sheep going crazy for oak leaves....  (Read 10359 times)


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Pen Llyn
    • Viable Self
Re: Sheep going crazy for oak leaves....
« Reply #15 on: October 24, 2012, 09:33:10 pm »
Excessive ingestion of oak leaves can kill your sheep. A tup we sold to someone a few years back gorged on them and then died.

Still, you often find that they only eat these things if they are available in a strange environment, so you may be OK - just keep an eye on it.
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  • Joined Jul 2012
Re: Sheep going crazy for oak leaves....
« Reply #16 on: October 25, 2012, 10:42:18 am »
Ok on hawthorn, rowan, beech, birch, willow.

Avoid the seeds and berries of all of them.

Interested in your comment re. goats here Jaykay. Does the same apply to sheep with hawthorn berries? I've moved mine to the bottom field which has a hedgerow of hawthorn, crab apple and blackthorn, to give them shelter over winter. They're showing no interest in the fallen apples, but I'm wondering whether the hawthorn berries are poisonous? They won't get any of the sloes cos I'm having them for sloe gin!
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  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: Sheep going crazy for oak leaves....
« Reply #17 on: October 25, 2012, 10:49:13 am »
Hi Blackbird, it was a general comment since acorns, ash keys, alder catkins etc. in too large quantities can all be a problem (I think they concentrate chemicals in them, certainly for example when you're trying to use tannin to fix dyes you're advised to use the alder catkins rather than the leaves if possible).

But as far as I know, hawthorn berries are not a problem and I don't think either that sheep or goats would eat very many of them. My goats decimate my hawthorns for leaves but leave the berries mainly alone.

Most field hedges are largely hawthorn and sheep don't seem to have problem.


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