Toxic beetles linked to horse deaths
Hay tainted by a toxic beetle is blamed for the deaths of 14 horses and illnesses to dozens of others on a Wisconsin ranch.
Steady rain and flooding last summer left hay in fields at Red Ridge Riding Stable in Mauston unusable. So, the owners, Cindy Kanarowski-Peterson and her husband, Lyle Peterson, bought six semi loads of hay and alfalfa from South Dakota and Wyoming to feed their horses. A blister beetle that releases a toxin when crushed during harvest is blamed for the horses’ deaths and for sickening 100 other horses. Veterinarian Dave Kolb said the toxin irritates the linings of the horses’ stomachs and intestines.