• To be found in warm, usually dry areas.
• In grassland and sandy soil and on stony hills not in marshy
areas or clay soils.
• Usually as part of a typical plant community which includes:
Burkea africana, Terminalia sericea, Ochna pulchra and Parinari capensis.
General: A woody, deciduous, perennial dwarf shrub with an extensive root system which could be compared to an“underground tree”, usually forming large colonies.
Leaves: The hairy, reddish-brown twigs have a minute stipule on either side of each leaf stalk. The pale green leaves are simple, alternate, usually covered with fine short hairs when young, becoming hairless, stiff and leathery with age. The veins are prominent and the side veins loop before they reach the margins.
Flowers: Small dense pale green to yellowish-white clusters of fragrant flowers in the axils of the leaves. Spring.
Fruit: When fruits develop, they look like small yellow peaches, but they are seldom seen.
Monofluoroacetate, which affects the heart and nervous system. Pathophysiology:
Fluoroacetate condenses with Co-enzyme A to form fluoroacetyl CoA that reacts with oxalo-acetic acid to form fluorocitrate, which irreversibly inhibits aconitase and stops tricarboxylic acid cycle (Krebs cycle).
• Cause of sudden death in ruminants (especially cattle) after a latent period of
four to 24 hours.
• Poisoned animals are often restless, hypersensitive, tremble and exhibit rapid
breathing. If allowed to rest, these animals may recover.
• Cattle that ingest lethal quantities of “gifblaar” typically drop dead after drinking
water or following exertion.
• Leaf remnants in rumen
• Nothing characteristic - signs of heart failure
• Cyanosis • Congestion
• Subepi- and subendocardial haemorrhages
• Not characteristic • Multifocal cardiac muscle necrosis (with lymphocyte infiltration and early fibroplasia) in more chronic cases
• Keep animals calm and rested
• Move carefully from gifblaar camp - don’t exert
• Keep away from water for 48 hours
Colour photos. Final web-ready size: JPEG. Photo 1: 12.2 kb, 300 ppi; Photo 2: 33.2 kb, 300 ppi; Photo 3: 26.8 kb, 72 ppi, Photo 4: 10.8 kb, 72 ppi; Photo 5: 7.5 kb, 72 ppi. Original TIFF file housed at the Dept. of Paraclinical Sciences, Section Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Pretoria.