Leucothoe davisiae

Common names:
Mountain, Black or Sierra laurel
Family:
Heath
Region:
W. coastal states
Habitat:
Lakesides, streamsides, mountain meadows
Toxic season:
Year-round
Features:
Evergreen shrub to 5' tall. Leaves are primarily toothless, thickly lance-shaped, stiff and leathery, alternate, up to 3" long. Flowers are small, white, somewhat urn-shaped in thick elongated clusters up to 4" long at branch ends.
Poison type:
Diterpenoid compounds (grayanotoxins)
Signs/effects:
Disruptive to normal skeletal and cardiac muscle and nerve function. Signs include slow/irregular heart rate, blurred vision, paralysis, excessive salivation or foaming at the mouth, depression, vomiting, colic, labored breathing, prostration, possibly coma and death.
Treatment:
Activated charcoal, purgatives if early after ingestion. Keep animal quiet, provide good quality feed and water. Medication may be needed to restore heart efficiency.
Comments:
Leaves are most frequently eaten; as little as 1 oz. of leaves may be lethal to a sheep. All livestock are known to be susceptible. Toxic to humans. Other members of the genus may also be poisonous.

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