March fiddleneck bloom toxic to horses

Fiddleneck plants are in bloom this month in Anza and equestrians need to know they are toxic to horses. Anza Valley Outlook/Diane Sieker photo
Winter rain and snow are bringing forth lovely wildflower blooms across the Anza Valley. One of the earliest blossoms to emerge is the infamous fiddleneck.There are several native fiddleneck species in California. Amsinckia intermedia, the Common Fiddleneck, or Intermediate Fiddleneck is a common annual herb species in the Boraginaceae family, the Borage or Forget-me-not family of plants.However, some varieties of fiddlenecks can be a problem in crop fields, orchards and pastures. In fact, the seeds can be toxic to livestock when ingested in large amounts.Poisonings most often occur when livestock eat grain or feed contaminated with fiddleneck seeds.Cattle and horses are most sensitive to fiddleneck poisoning, while pigs and chickens are less sensitive, and sheep, goats and
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