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Jersey horse owners warned about spread of ragwort

Jersey’s landowners are being asked to take action against the poisonous weed ragwort after warm, humid weather on the island this year is causing it to spread more rapidly than previously.

The yellowing flowering weed can be fatal to horses, causing damage to their liver, weight loss and jaundice.

Although animals are less likely to eat it in its raw, growing state, the weed often ends up in hay and silage.

Alan Derrien, head of agricultural inspection for the States told H&H: “We are launching an awareness campaign to control the weed and encourage anyone who spots ragwort to cut it down, or preferably dig it up — using gloves — and to call us.

“We’ve already been very busy with calls so we are hoping we can stop it seeding and spreading.

“Although it is impossible to eradicate ragwort we have been successful in preventing the spread in the past few years — Jersey’s landowners are very proactive.

“The weather this year has provided perfect growing conditions and although it is not yet a major problem we want to stop it from spreading.”

If anyone sees any ragwort in Jersey they should call 01534 873314.

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