Rhubarb leaves and chickens

Discussion in 'HortForum' started by Unregistered, Jan 12, 2004.

  1. We were wondering if it is ok to feed chooks and ducks with rhubarb leaves?
  2. HortLine

    HortLine Active Member 10 Years

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    Vancouver, BC
    For a more definitive answer I recommend that you ask your veternarian or the animal science division of a university which has a department of agricultural sciences.

    My own personal experience with rhubarb is that even when grown in the barnyard, no animals were inclined to eat it; however, all the avian and mammalian members of my small farm had access to pasture and forage. I surmised that common sense regards plant toxicity had not been completely bred out of them. On the other hand, goats, cows and horses are known to be poisoned by eating toxic plants particularly when pasture conditions are poor and toxic weeds are more abundant than nutritious grasses, legumes, and brouse.

    Because rhubarb leaves contain high, toxic, levels of oxalic acid, which can cause kidney damage to animals eating them, I would not recommend providing them as feed to chickens and ducks, especially if the animals are confined and do not have access to abundant supplementary pasture.

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