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The Abortifacient and Toxic Effects of Big Sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma) on Domestic Sheep

A. Earl Johnson, Lynn F. James and Juan Spillett
Journal of Range Management
Vol. 29, No. 4 (Jul., 1976), pp. 278-280
DOI: 10.2307/3897079
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3897079
Page Count: 3
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Abortifacient and Toxic Effects of Big Sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma) on Domestic Sheep
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Abstract

Big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) fed to sheep by stomach pump to study its abortifacient properties during the 2nd trimester of pregnancy produced no reproductive difficulties. However, big sagebrush was lethal when 3/4 lb was fed by this method daily for 1, 2, or 3 days. Sagebrush fed 1/4 lb daily and slowly increased to 3/4 lb daily was not toxic. These findings confirm many general reports of suspected sagebrush toxicity and indicate the need for caution in moving sheep rapidly onto big sagebrush areas. Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma) fed to sheep in 1 lb daily amounts in an interrupted series of feedings totaling 30 days in the 2nd and early 3rd trimester of pregnancy caused abortion in 2 sheep and birth of a weak lamb from a 3rd sheep. Attempts to confirm these findings by feeding juniper to other sheep during gestation days 60 to 90 were unsuccessful.

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