Ha. A natural (or unnatural) experiment. Thank you both for clarifying the mechanism of action of buckthorn and for the demonstration of its effect on mammals.
Good luck with the clean up.
From: Ellie George <[log in to unmask]>
To: VTBIRD <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sun, Jan 27, 2019 10:17 am
Subject: [VTBIRD] FW: buckthorn and birds
The forwarded email below contains 2 links to informative articles about
buckthorn and birds. It is a much more complicated relationship than it
appears at first. Unripe buckthorn fruits contain more emodin and can cause
diarrhea in birds and mammals. Ripe fruits contain much less emodin, and
in birds, very low levels can cause the fruits to pass through slower than
normal. Many species can detect levels of emodin and avoid eating unripe
fruits. By winter, wouldn't most fruits be ripe (or overripe)?
As an aside, emodin works to cause diarrhea in mammals and humans. My
Labrador retriever, who eats anything organic, and was on-leash for the
hike, was eating some of the dropped buckthorn fruits yesterday that the
robins had knocked off the trees. Last night she had a hefty bout of
diarrhea, so I will be striving to keep her away from buckthorn fruits in
From: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Sunday, January 27, 2019 9:03 AM
To: Ellie George <[log in to unmask]>