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We had a lamb born yesterday , about 10 pounds and full term, with gross abnormalities to the head, although the body appeared fine. It had one very large eye in center of forehead, no nose, no upper jaw bone and no roof in the mouth. The cranial area appeared misshapen and small and there was an appendage ( like a goats wattle) on the forehead above the single eye.
It was dead at birth, which I'm guessing was due to the brain activity not functioning .
I spoke to my vet and she said it is caused by ingesting a certain plant, Veratrum, commomly called Corn Lily or False Hellbore , during a critical 24 to 48 hour window of fetal developement. She thought it was only a western states plant. I live in New York State. I know exactly what pasture she was in for the first 6 weeks of her pregnancy so now need to know what to look for. Whats it look like? This was in November and early December. We did also supplement with some hay a few times there as well. The hay is cut right here as well.Help! I told her I wish the ewe had a second lamb, but she said they both would have been affected. Kate in NYS :confused:
 

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You might want to consider changing vets, or at least making a major effort to educate this one. We had a large patch of false hellebore on our place in central New Hampshire, and it was quite common in that area. So I'm pretty sure it's common throughout the North East. Have never seen it, as far as I can recall, in the West -- but the West is huge, and I haven't seen all of it!

Sorry to hear about your lamb, that's a disconcerting thing to have happen.

Kathleen
 
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