Chickens and poison ivy

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by GrannyPat, May 24, 2009.

  1. GrannyPat

    GrannyPat Out Of The Brooder

    Can anyone tell me if chickens will eat poison ivy and will it hurt them if they do? I am building them a big coop with a large run but I would like to let them out sometimes to run around free. We have a cleared area around our house but the rest of the property is wooded and full of poison ivy and I'm afraid they will eat it and it will hurt them. If someone tells me they will eat it and it won't hurt them it will make my day because I would love to be rid of that stuff. :)

    GrannyPat
     
  2. annek

    annek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    don't know for sure on chickens but birds eat the seeds, that is how poison oak/ivy is spread. be aware their poop will spread seeds
     
  3. annek

    annek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    also you can get it if they get it on their feathers and you touch them
     
  4. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    Previous threads about poison ivy say that they can & will eat it fine. Just don't touch the hens after they have been in it.

    Imp- Will trade bindweed for poison ivy.
     
  5. annek

    annek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    did an internet search and came up with this:

    Eating Poison Ivy
    It has been said that the only bad thing about
    chickens eating poison ivy is that they don’t eat enough
    of it. Chickens and turkeys have been observed eating
    the evil vine/plant with no ill effects. The only side effect
    is that they get it on them and then come to their favorite
    human to be petted. That usually results in a two week
    regimen of cortisone.
    The reason that chickens do not develop any ill
    effects from eating poison ivy is because avian (bird)
    histamine and allergic reactions are very different from
    people and most warm blooded animals. Chickens
    have nucleated red blood cells and this protects them.

    Looks like you are in clear!

    Anne
     
  6. GrannyPat

    GrannyPat Out Of The Brooder

    Thanks for all your replies. Them getting it on themselves and then giving it to me had slipped my mind because I had read that about dogs and cats before. Then I have a slight problem because I love petting my chickens. :) They are even starting to eat our of my hand. Also, never thought about them spreading it from the woods to my yard but guess that's possible too. Guess that's why we have so much in our woods because we feed the birds and have tons of birds coming after all these years. Makes me itch just thinking about it!!! :)

    Also reminds me of something else to share on the subject. A few years ago we had a tree fall on our power line near the house and the power company sent two men out to remove it. My husband got to talking to them and he asked them how on earth they kept from getting poison ivy the way they were always climbing and cutting trees for the power company. Their answer was that they eat the leaves and that builds up their resistance. They swore that they never get it because of that. Makes sense I guess but as allergic as I am to it I just can't quite see myself chomping on any poison ivy leaves. :)

    GrannyPat
     
  7. Imp

    Imp All things share the same breath- Chief Seattle

    Quote:I think refraining from eating poison ivy is a good idea. I just did a quick Google search and about half the hits referred to fatal allergic reaction, picky sores, and blistering internally. [​IMG]

    Imp- I would put in the league of toadstool testing.

    OK picky is not my word. BYC subbed it. I was refering to the end of the digestive track. lol
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2009
  8. annek

    annek Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I think refraining from eating poison ivy is a good idea. I just did a quick Google search and about half the hits referred to fatal allergic reaction, picky sores, and blistering internally. [​IMG]

    Imp- I would put in the league of toadstool testing.

    OK picky is not my word. BYC subbed it. I was refering to the end of the digestive track. lol

    I agree PLEASE DO NOT eat poison ivy. I heard this when I was a kid. It is false. I am highly allergic to poison ivy and poison oak and my allergist said this is an old wives tale and very dangerous. I have poison oak all over my property and get it at least once a year. I have a sprayer with a kill in it and orange flags on sticks. I walk around with my sprayer, spray the stuff and mark it with a flag so I can respray when I need to. I keep it down but it is tough and I think I know why. One of my dogs got out of my fence and ran across the street to one of my neighbors houses, I chased her up the driveway and noticed that they had HUNDREDS of poison oak plants growing along their driveway. I guess this is a good way to keep people away from your property!!! Needless to say, she didn't get out again!
     
  9. topknot19

    topknot19 Out Of The Brooder

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    Interesting posts about chickens eatging Poison ivy! I have poison ivy growing now near my coop and the chickens seem to ignore it. But I am worried that my DW will brush against it or the pullets will give it to her and then I will be in deep trouble. :p

    Is there a herbacide that can be safely used in spot spraying around the pullets? In past summers BC (before chickens) I just used Ortho weed and brush killer a couple of times early in the summer and that took care of the poison ivy for the summer.

    Any suggestions on how or what to spray around the coop and in the area where the pullets free range?

    Thanks,

    topknot
     
  10. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

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    Well, maybe I'm playing with fire, but I just use Roundup, and have free ranging hens. Never had a problem from it. I spray weeds that they don't eat anyway. If they would eat them, I would not need the Roundup....
     

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