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Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by fairladi_chick, Jan 28, 2009.
can chickens eat sumac berries? we have some sumac and was wonderin if its ok?
Well, I hope you get a response from someone more knowledgeable.
The sumac here is not the poisonous kind. I checked some toxic plant sites and it isn't listed by UCDavis, Purdue University Plants Poisonous to Livestock and Pets, or by Merck Vet Manual.
Here's what Cornell's Plants Poisonous to Livestock and other Animals says about it: "Species Most Often Affected: humans"
West Virginia University, Poisonous Plants of the Southern United States: "The toxin has little or no effect on animals but pets may carry the irritating substance on their hair and thereby transmit it to humans."
Keep in mind that poison ivy is related and looks similar. So . . . I don't really know what to tell you.
The red sumac seeds were used as a tea. But all the others are poisonous. Know your plants before trying any wild plant. I am not sure if fowl could tolerate them either. Jean
I believe they are poisonous to chickens but don't think you have to worry because if they are, then very likely, they won't eat them (or they will not eat enough to get sick).
There are many types of sumac, we made a berry drink out of them when I was a kid. Apparently, Mama knew which one was good, lol.
Here is a link to a website to a really good article about sumac.
I don't know if there are different types of sumac, but here in Michigan we have sumac growing and this time of year there are a lot of birds eating the berries. (Not much else sticking up above the snow). I have also seen large flocks of bluebirds eating them in the fall. I've read that they are not poisonous to the birds, but not necessarily nutritious either. At least that's what I've read for feeding wild birds/songbirds. I would assume that chickens would fall into this same category.
I just got a load of mulch (free) 3 cu yards. It is pecan and sumac, the plan is to put it in the isles of my garden. Gardens are good for chickens, but chickens are not good for the garden, therefore my girls are not to have access to it as a rule. As with children I am sure they will get in my garden and on occasion they will get treats. I am in Arizona, don't know what verity grows here. I know that there are a lot of plants that have toxic parts. Best example is the apple and rhubarb, the seeds in apples and the leaves in rhubarb. What of these trees?
when you talk about the "red sumac" I assume you are meaning Staghorn which grows wild all over my state of Michigan. I HAVE made Sumac lemonade from it. But I just bought a variety called Tiger Eyes, does anybody know if that is a NO NO for chickens??