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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 13, 2002
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    Idaho USA
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    1,876

    Default Maple Trees

    Are all Maple trees toxic to horses? Are some OK? If so, which ones. Thanks!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2006
    Location
    Saco, Maine
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    4,715

    Default

    No. So called Red Maple http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acer_rubrum is the toxic one. At the bottom of this article it states that 1.5 pounds of leaves can cause illness-My vet has seen death in a horse with a MUCH smaller ingestion. She also says the leaves are not toxic until they begin to wilt and die. Scary.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec. 31, 2007
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    AreaII
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    1,348

    Default

    There have been studies on the Silver Maple as well- but inconclusive results (meaning I know about the study but can't find results of such study!).

    I've heard of a very low tolerance for Red Maple once leaves wilt.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2009
    Posts
    2,108

    Default

    Actually, most of them are safe except for Acer Rubrum, the typical red maple. Our horse pastures have been lined for 10 years with full sized silver and sugar maples and they're fine. Fatten up in the fall from the leaves... but fine. I did just move and have Japanese maples which are physically red, but have yet to find out whether these are dangerous or not.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct. 13, 2002
    Location
    Idaho USA
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    Default

    We seem to have silver, and sensation maples.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 18, 2000
    Location
    ~~~Virginia Horse Country~~~
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    6,855

    Default

    Cherry trees, at least wild cherry trees, have the same toxic properties when the leaves are wilting.
    http://www.talloaksfarm.net ---"Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts." --- Winston Churchill



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 18, 2003
    Location
    Davidsonville, MD
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    2,695

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by talloaks View Post
    Cherry trees, at least wild cherry trees, have the same toxic properties when the leaves are wilting.
    It's actually a different toxic principle in cherry trees (and all members of the prunus species, including apricots, peaches and plums). When the leaves wilt, they release a cyanogenic glycoside called prunasin. When those reach the cecum/large intestine, they are converted to free cyanide and the animal dies of cyanide poisoning. The cyanide blocks the ability of hemoglobin to release oxygen so the animal's tissues basically become starved of oxygen. Because of the way horses digestive tracts are set up, they are less likely to be poisoned by wilted cherry leaves than ruminants such as cattle.

    In Red maples and hybrids of red maple (and possibly silver maples, as already mentioned), the toxin, which has not yet been identified, acts much differently. The toxin in red maple oxidizes hemoglobin in red blood cells causing formation of Heinz Bodies leading to hemolytic anemia. The scary thing with maple is that the leaves are toxic when wilted or dried, and in fact they've discovered that they appear to be more toxic as the leaves get older (i.e., more toxic in fall when dried leaves fall). Horses apparently also find them pretty tasty. Only takes about 6 pounds to kill a pony in as little as 1-5 days. Horses are the only known species to be affected by maple poisoning.
    Erin
    Dodon Farm - Home of Salute The Truth, Thoroughbred Stallion and on Facebook
    The Retired Racehorse Training Project, a 501(c)3 Non profit organization.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 3, 2004
    Location
    Ontario
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    793

    Default

    Here's an excellent link from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture.
    I'm in Ontario and goodness knows we have a LOT of maple trees

    http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/...cts/06-109.htm

    It's only the dead, wilted, dried-up leaves of the read maple that are toxic.
    And 1.5 pounds of dried up leaves is a LOT of leaves.

    I have a red maple bordering my pasture and I have never, ever seen my horses show ANY interest in the leaves, dead or alive.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 22, 2003
    Location
    Southern Maryland
    Posts
    1,267

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mallard View Post
    I have a red maple bordering my pasture and I have never, ever seen my horses show ANY interest in the leaves, dead or alive.
    Ditto here.
    Experience is what you get, when you didn't get what you wanted.



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