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Toxicity of leucaena leucocephala in st ines sheep


, : Toxicity of leucaena leucocephala in st ines sheep. Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Zootecnia 21(1): 01-09

Twenty Sta Ines wethers were randomly allocated in four equal groups to collective pens receiving the following diets: A = green panic (Panicum maximum, var. Trichoglume) hay; B = fresh leaves of Leucaena leucocephala, cv. Cunningham, with 33.95 .+-. 6.38% dry matter, at 2% the live weight + A; C = fresh leaves of Leucaena at 4% of the live weight + A: and D = fresh leaves of Leucaena only. In the 56th, 112th and 168th (experiment end) days, blood samples were taken from serum thyroxine (T4) analysis. All the animals were sacrified for thyroid glands and digestive tract examination. Hypothyroidism with clinical signs of toxicity were temporarily observed in only one of the D sheep. This animal, however, recovered its body condition and normal thyroxine level at the end of the experiment. Enlarged thyroid glands (P < 0.05) were observed on D sheep, but not associated to hypothyroidism, exceptional and temporarily on the cited animal. These results suggest the eventual and reversible nature of toxical effects of a sole and prolongated diet of Leucaena Cunningham for Sta Ines sheep. Nevertheless, no abnormalities were found on mixed diets.

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