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Risk from herbicide 7-8 years ago?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi All

 

I was looking for others opinion.  We have had our flock of 9 chickens for almost a year now.  Last year, we would free range the chickens in the fenced-in backyard.  Honestly, it was less than ideal.  There were chicken bombs that rivaled the size of my 10 lb dogs all over the yard.  We have a small piece of land (1/3 of an acre).  They also attacked my raised bed gardens which i will be expanding this year and will need to come up with some sort of fencing option.

 

But, I do have a wooded area behind my fenced in backyard.  Thats actually where i built the coop and run.  so, my thought was to give them the area back there to free range.  HOWEVER, we used to have a massive poison ivy problem back there.  We hired a landscape company to come out two years in a row to chemically treat it with a "kill-all" herbicide.  The poison ivy was actually vines that were 2" in diameter which were climbing the trees and strangling them.  They were also dropping seed so there was ground vines also.  im terribly allergic to poison ivy, so we had it done.  it was treated in july of 2008 and may of 2009.  so, it has been 7 years.  

 

i am concerned that it could still be in the soil and could sicken the chickens, or trace amounts could end up in the eggs i feed my kids (and others).  i actually built the pen on top of a 6" raised bed to keep it off the ground back there.  but, i feel like i am probably being paranoid.  i have reached out to the landscaper to ask what they used, but they do not keep records beyond 3 years.  they believe whatever they used would be long gone out of the soil by now.  but, i have no concrete evidence.

 

what are others opinion on this?  i am heavily leaning toward not risking it and keeping them in the backyard for ranging.  but, i also feel i am being overly paranoid..... 

post #2 of 9

2,4-D and glyphosate are the two most popular used herbicides and likely what was used on your lot, it's completely broken down by microbes in the soil almost immediately.  they both work by being absorbed though the leaves of actively growing plants. 

 

now granted you'll find plenty of the 'Anti GMO' people who will tell you that your property is more hazardous then a nuclear fallout, but you're safe to let your chickens forage.

post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JetCat View Post

2,4-D and glyphosate are the two most popular used herbicides and likely what was used on your lot, it's completely broken down by microbes in the soil almost immediately.  they both work by being absorbed though the leaves of actively growing plants. 

now granted you'll find plenty of the 'Anti GMO' people who will tell you that your property is more hazardous then a nuclear fallout, but you're safe to let your chickens forage.

2x, most of these foliage/systemic chemicals have decipate @3-6 months even if it contains mecrocorp & triclopyr that has residual effects. There is more chem residues in our vegetables and food available in supermarkets.
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Basic starter: Personally designed & built Shed/Coupe/Run: 3 Leghorns, 2 Plymouth Barred Rocks, 5 Silver Laced Wyandottes

NEW ADDITION: 4/21/15
Rhode Island Reds, Plymouth Barred Rock
Black Copper Marans & Blue Marans
12x24x7 additional run


NEW BABIES: 2/17/16
New Hampshires, Black Australorps, Amerecaunas,
Easter Eggers & Black Sex Links

NEWER YET: 3/16/16
Spe...
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Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Basic starter: Personally designed & built Shed/Coupe/Run: 3 Leghorns, 2 Plymouth Barred Rocks, 5 Silver Laced Wyandottes

NEW ADDITION: 4/21/15
Rhode Island Reds, Plymouth Barred Rock
Black Copper Marans & Blue Marans
12x24x7 additional run


NEW BABIES: 2/17/16
New Hampshires, Black Australorps, Amerecaunas,
Easter Eggers & Black Sex Links

NEWER YET: 3/16/16
Spe...
Reply
post #4 of 9
I prefer to go organic with as much as possible.
I believe your chickens would be better off forging than not forging. I believe if I remember correctly that is actually enough time passed that the land could be used on an organic farm.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your replies. Does anyone know of anything that could have been used that could still be an issue?

The thoughts that run through my head that make me want to let them range back there are:

1). I can't imagine they doused the soil. The would have sprayed the leaves. I can't remember if they cut the vines and then spayed the ends to kill the vines. But, still I can't imagine a ton was used.

2.). I realize they could eat rocks etc, but it's not like they will be eating large quantities of the dirt.

3). It's been 7 years. Could it really still be an issue?

The thoughts I have for not letting them roam back there are:

1). I have no idea what chemical was used. I do know when he was describing what they would need to do to get rid of it was he said something like "we will be using a really strong kill-all chemical. Kind of like agent orange so anything It touches will die. It's not something a homeowner can get."

Those words scare me. I do know that a few days before they came to my property they bought Roundup PRo from their supplier (their supplier still had records). But still not sure that is what they used on my property. Obviously if it was roundup I would not be concerned any longer. But the fact he mentioned agent orange scares me.

2). I'm feeding these eggs to my kids. I couldn't live with myself if they got sick someday. I would blame the eggs.


Ugh, this really stinks.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
One more item. I have scoured the Internet for companies that analyze soil. I only found two that seem to do more than just ph type testing. Neither has responded to my emails. I would gladly pay to have the soil analyzed. Just not having any luck finding a company that would do it.
post #7 of 9

http://perrylaboratory.com/index.shtml    that's who the vast majority of us farmers use.

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thank you very much jencat. I have sent them an email to see if they can test for herbicides. If so, this will definitely put my mind at ease
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have reached out to 15 to 20 labs and no one can test for herbicides without knowing specifically what herbicide was sprayed. If I knew that, I'd be able to research the half life myself.

So I am leaning toward setting their pen up on the area. I find it hard to believe a herbicide sprayed on poison ivy 7 years ago could provide a risk to the eggs we eat. Still don't like it though......
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