Oxytropis lambertii (Scientific name)

General poisoning notes:

Purple locoweed (Oxytropis lambertii) is found in the southern parts of Manitoba and Saskatchewan. This species can cause locoism, a chronic disease that results after long-term grazing. The plant contains swainsonine, an alkaloid, which results in cellular dysfunction through a long biological process. Affected animals show nervous system impairment, with symptoms such as dullness and excitement, as well as immune system impairment. Abortion and congenital birth deformities may occur. Animals affected include cattle, horses, and sheep. Animals may become habituated to locoweed. Death can result (James 1983, Cheeke and Schull 1985).

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.
  • James, L. F. 1983. Neurotoxins and other toxins from Astragalus and related genera. Pages 445-462 in Keeler, R. F., Tu, A. T., eds. Handbook of natural toxins. Vol. 1. Plant and Fungal toxins. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.

Nomenclature:

Scientific Name:
Oxytropis lambertii Pursh
Vernacular name(s):
purple locoweed
Scientific family name:
Leguminosae
Vernacular family name:
pea

Go to ITIS*ca for more taxonomic information on: Oxytropis lambertii

References:

  • Agriculture Quebec. 1975. Noms des maladies des plantes du Canada/ Names of plant diseases in Canada. , Quebec City, Que., Canada. 288 pp.
  • Alex, J. F., Cayouette, R., Mulligan, G. A. 1980. Common and botanical names of weeds in Canada/Noms populaire et scientifiques des plantes nuisibles du Canada. Revised. Agric. Can. Publ., Ottawa, Ont., Canada. 132 pp.
  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Scoggan, H. J. 1978, 1979. The flora of Canada. Nat. Mus. Nat. Sci. (Ottawa) Publ. Bot. 7(1)-7(4). 1711 pp.
  • Van Wijk, H. L. 1911. A dictionary of plant names. Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, The Netherlands. 1444 pp.
  • Victorin, M. 1964. Flore Laurentienne. 2nd ed. Univ. Montreal, Montreal, Que., Canada. 952 pp.

Geographic Information

  • Manitoba
  • Saskatchewan

References:

  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Boivin, B. 1966, 1967. Énumération des plantes du Canada. Provencheria 6. Nat. Can. (Que.) 93: 253-274; 371-437; 583-646; 989-1063. 94: 131-157; 471-528; 625-655.

Image or illustration

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Notes on Poisonous plant parts:

The blooms of locoweeds contain more swainsonine than the leaves. The immature pods contain less swainsonine than the blooms, but this amount increases with the maturity of the seeds (Ralphs et al. 1986).

Toxic parts:

  • flowers
  • leaves
  • mature fruit

References:

  • James, L. F. 1983. Neurotoxins and other toxins from Astragalus and related genera. Pages 445-462 in Keeler, R. F., Tu, A. T., eds. Handbook of natural toxins. Vol. 1. Plant and Fungal toxins. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.
  • Ralphs, M. H., James, L. F., Pfister, J. A. 1986. Utilization of white locoweed (Oxytropis sericea Nutt.) by range cattle. J. Range Manage., 39: 344-347.

Notes on Toxic plant chemicals:

Swainsonine, an indolizidine alkaloid, inhibits alpha-mannosidase in the animal's body, which results in eventual disruption of cellular function when inhibited (Cheeke and Schull 1985).

Toxic plant chemicals:

  • swainsonine

References:

  • James, L. F. 1983. Neurotoxins and other toxins from Astragalus and related genera. Pages 445-462 in Keeler, R. F., Tu, A. T., eds. Handbook of natural toxins. Vol. 1. Plant and Fungal toxins. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.

Animals/Human Poisoning:

Note: When an animal is listed without additional information, the literature (as of 1993) contained no detailed explanation.

Cattle

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.
  • James, L. F. 1983. Neurotoxins and other toxins from Astragalus and related genera. Pages 445-462 in Keeler, R. F., Tu, A. T., eds. Handbook of natural toxins. Vol. 1. Plant and Fungal toxins. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, N.Y., USA. 934 pp.

Horses

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.

Sheep

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Cheeke, P. R., Shull, L. R. 1985. Natural toxicants in feeds and poisonous plants. AVI Publishing Company, Inc., Westport, Conn., USA. 492 pp.

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