While oak trees can be a stunning feature of any farm or rural property, many people don’t realize that acorns are toxic, even potentially deadly for livestock. According to experts, cattle are most prone to the dangers of acorns when they aren’t receiving enough feed. Consumption of a large amount of acorns has been known to cause sickness and even death in livestock.
Acorn toxicity stems from tannins, compounds that are most present in both green acorns and early buds in the spring. While small amounts of acorns won’t be harmful to your cattle, it’s when they eat large amounts that there is cause for concern. Consumption of too many green or budding acorns can lead to the buildup of deadly levels of tannins in your animals.
So how do we protect our livestock from the dangers of acorns? We recommend fencing off any areas with oak trees, as well as trimming any branches that may come into your livestock’s reach. Additionally, keep an eye on the weather. Rain and windstorms can easily knock acorns to the ground and into the reach of your animals.
Here at Tarter we’re invested in the welfare of animals and their owners across the country. We hope these tips will help you to provide a safe and happy environment for any and all livestock on your property!