DISTRIBUTION: Occurs in mixed grassland or open sandy areas. Spreads rapidly in disturbed soil or trampled veld.
General: It is a woody, much branched perennial herb 30-60 cm in height with white hairy stems.
Leaves: The leaves are three (sometimes five) foliate and have long leaf stalks. Hairy, becoming smooth on upper surface later.
Flowers: 5 - 12 Pea-like flowers in lax raceme. White, sometimes tinged yellow or mauve with brown or dark blue veins. August - March.
Fruit: Inflated oblong hairy pods + 4cm long, containing brown kidney-shaped seeds.
• The toxin of C. burkeana is not known, but differs markedly from the effects of the other poisonous Crotalaria spp.
• The active principles of Crotalaria spp. worldwide are the pyrrolizidine
alkaloids which are mainly responsible for severe liver and/or lung damage in stock.
Skin and appendages.
Stywesiekte occurs most commonly in cattle, but sheep, goats, donkeys, horses and wild antelope can also be affected.
• Claws/hooves warm to the touch, painful.
- Affected stock walk with difficulty,
- Lameness (as if walking on eggs!)
- All four feet affected. Front legs to the fore, hind legs tucked in under body.
- Frequently lies down.
- Rises with difficulty.
• Can’t get to grazing or water.
• Loss in condition, drop in milk production.
Chronic condition: (Following the acute attack)
• Hoof tissue is stimulated and grows abnormally.
• Points of the claw become elongated and turn up.
• The stock walk with difficulty.
Acute: Cold water, symptomatic, provide feed and water. Chronic: Cut/shape the claw.
Colour photos. Final web-ready size: JPEG. Photo 1: 11.9 kb, 180 ppi; Photo 2: 8.7 kb, 72 ppi; Photo 3: 17 kb, 96 ppi; Photo 4: 4.7 kb, 180 ppi; Photo 5: 31.6 kb, 96 ppi; Photo 6: 7.2 kb, 72 ppi. Original TIFF file housed at the Dept. of Paraclinical Sciences, Section Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Pretoria.