U.S. drought fallout . . . might it affect all of our ducks?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Amiga, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I just read a news release, then found a research article that backed up my concerns about aflatoxin in duck feed.

    Forewarned is forearmed, it is said.

    Looks like Iowa has received and Illinois has requested the FDA to allow higher levels of aflatoxin in corn used in animal feeds. And ducks appear to be particularly sensitive to aflatoxin.

    More experienced duck folks do our best to help new duck folks navigate the steep learning curve. We may need to keep this news release in the backs of our minds when we read about ducks failing to thrive.

    Here is an abstract from research published by Tropical Animal Health journal. It seems to me that ducks are ducks, whether in the tropics or temperate areas. Anyway . . .

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/f77163k07x35t511/

    And here is the news release about the requests to the FDA

    http://in.reuters.com/article/2012/09/24/usa-drought-aflatoxin-illinois-idINL1E8KO8PK20120924
     
    2 people like this.
  2. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    this is good info and may end in more people needing to feed whole grains.
     
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Thanks, Celtic, when I saw a link to this a little alarm went off in my mind. I had wondered if we would need to adjust our feed in the near future due to corn prices as a result of the drought, but hadn't even considered aflatoxin. sheesh. I studied it a little bit when I took a mycology class (fungi are astounding), so when I saw that, I got a sinking feeling.

    Don't know how long it would take corn to get through the pipeline and onto feedstore shelves.

    Here is more detail about the terms of the mixing of the aflatoxin corn.
    http://brownfieldagnews.com/2012/09/18/permission-to-blend-aflatoxin-corn-in-iowa/
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2012
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Looks like corn should not be part of our ducks/geese diet pretty soon. Would be nice to know when this will happen but we most likely won't. Thanks for sharing Amiga.
     
  5. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks for the heads up Amiga. That is something that everyone needs to know and keep in mind.
     
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I know it may be a little late for me to try arithmetic, but if I do this right, micrograms per kilogram is equal to parts per billion (ppb).

    And if that is the case, the research comparing the effects of 50 micrograms per kilogram of aflatoxin on ducks versus chickens showed that while the chickens did not seem to be affected, there was "significantly reduced body weight gain and utilisation of dietary protein in ducks as compared with chickens. The higher the aflatoxin content above 50 micrograms/kg the greater was the difference in performance between ducks and chickens. Dietary aflatoxins caused liver damage in ducks while no damage was recorded in chickens."

    FDA allows up to 300 ppb aflatoxins in corn for animal feed, according to the Reuters news article. Hmmm.

    Okay, I am going to let this rest tonight.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Tivona

    Tivona Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was looking at various pages and I came up with the same math.
    100 mcg/kg =(100 ppb) Aflatoxin. 50 mcg is harmful to ducks. FDA allowing 300 ppb would be umm 6 times the amount in the study that harmed ducks.= NOT GOOD!
    Thanks for posting about this. Definitely going to have to look into this and what I feed...
     
  8. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    this will be across the board in all animal feeds as well. Dogs, cats, poultry, waterfowl, horses ect. Sadly if it is allowed to be too high we may see small flocks effected with owners unaware what is going on.
     
  9. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Corn is in all the feed so how will we handle this?
     
  10. Haunted55

    Haunted55 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, so what can I do for my ducks to make sure they are not affected? What about geese? Do I assume that they will react the same way? And how will we know? Do they have to disclose this on the feed bags or will the companies have to be contacted and asked point blank? Would Canadian grains be better to use? Is there a way to mitigate the problems with vitamin supplements or is the toxin beyond anything vitamnis would be able to counter act?

    I have never used whole grains to mix my own duck feed before so wouldn't know where to begin and what about possible contamination of those as well?
     

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