It’s the end of summer and many of us find ourselves with a couple extra daylilies in the garden. Do you know if goats eat daylilies? If not, what types of plants would make good goat forage? Find out below!
The short answer to “can goats eat daylilies?” is no, but it’s a little more complicated than that. Goats need a variety of plants in their diet, which is why they are sometimes referred to as browsers instead of grazers. Because they do not have top incisors they cannot graze very well on grasses or other plants that grow close to the ground. They rather strip an area of everything then move on, which is why many farmers keep them in a fenced area.
Many daylilies (Hemerocallis spp.) are poisonous to livestock and goats in particular. The toxic components accumulate over time if the same plant is eaten repeatedly or if it makes up most of their diet. While some parts of the daylily plant are edible, such as its underground tubers and green shoots–it can cause liver damage and other issues when consumed by goats in large quantities.
Are daylilies poisonous to goats?
Lilies in general are known to cause problems for goats, and some can even prove fatal. The ASPCA lists lilies under their toxic and non-toxic plants page, so the entire list of all types is not provided here. However there is a list of lilies that pose a threat:
• Daylily (Hemerocallis spp.)
• Tiger lily (Lilium columbianum)
• Showy lady’s slipper (Myrmecaphodius coccineus)
• Stargazer lily (Lilium orientalis)
The daylily however is most common and has been reported as particularly dangerous to pregnant goats.
What animals eat daylilies?
Goats are not the animals that like eating daylilies. The plant is often considered a weed and other animals such as rabbits, deer and groundhogs will eat them as well.
Symptoms Of Goats Eating Daylilies
Goats who have eaten too many daylilies will exhibit signs of liver disease. They may become jaundiced or act abnormally in other ways. Unfortunately, because the poison builds up over time it is sometimes difficult to pinpoint exactly what is wrong with them unless you know they’ve been eating daylilies recently.
If you suspect your goat has eaten any lilies contact your vet immediately for advice on treatment and possible antidotes that could be used to help flush the chemicals out of their system. You can also visit The Center For Veterinary Medicine which has an extensive database on poisonous plants , including photos to help identify them .
Are The Flowers Of A Day Lilies Safe For Goats To Eat?
A good rule of thumb is if in doubt, keep it out. Although they are beautiful plants to many people, they can pose several problems for goats when they eat too much of them. We’ve all seen the effects daylilies have on our gardens and it’s probably best if we don’t provide goats with a similar feast.