Summer weeds – do they have grazing potential and which ones are toxic
Article printed March 21, 2023. For the latest version, please go to: https://www.feedinglivestock.vic.gov.au/2022/12/09/summer-weeds-do-they-have-grazing-potential-and-which-ones-are-toxic/
Weeds! They are always there, no matter how hard you try.
Yet they can be a good source of green feed during the Summer providing additional protein and have been found to maintain liveweight in dry adult sheep.
However, not all weeds are suitable for grazing with Hairy Panic and Heliotrope for example containing toxins that cause liver damage.
For a snapshot on some key summer weeds and their nutritional value for grazing as well as key toxic ones, revisit our SheepNotes articles (part 1)
and Cam Nicolsons talk about the value of grazing weeds at the 2019 Bestwool Bestlamb conference
For more information about the growth information; benefits and problems; value for grazing and management options of 15 common weeds visit Weed fast facts – Southern Farming Systems (sfs.org.au) to view a Weeds Fast Fact guide published by MLA and Southern Farming Systems.