My mare is 9mo along, she has been off fescue since Dec. We are still putting her out to pasture, which is 95% dead and is suppose to be meadow grass and wild mix. We planted a fescue field outside the pasture 3 yrs ago, can seeds blow into the pasture and have caused a mix ? If so how much is to much fescue, if she would be getting any it would be very little, they stand at the gate most of the day since there is no grazing.
Fescue can either be endophyte free or not. If you've planted endophyte free fescue, then unless you had endophyte fescue seeds blow into the field, it should be fine. But if your field has endophye fescue than there very well could be a problem.
The fescue field outside the pasture will allow seeds to blow into your pasture and grow fescue in the pasture. This is what happened to our pasture. When we planted our pasture, we never planted fescue grass at all, but the seeds were carried in by the wind.
Even a little fescue is too much fescue. She has to be completely off fescue for at least 90 prior to foaling. Even if the fescue is not growing because of winter, if she is nibbling on the smallest of stubs, she'll have problems. My horses like to paw the snow and eat what little grass there is that's exposed. So they will be ingesting the fescue grass. Even dried hay that has endophyte fescue in it, will be just as bad as eating it fresh.
My pregnant mare is on a virtually dry lot because we have fescue. I've never tested it to see if it is infected, but I'm not taking a chance. If you want to test your fescue to see if it's infected, you need to take 3 to 4 samples of the fescue, per acre of pasture. It gets rather expensive with all the samples, so that's why I haven't done it.
I hope this helps.
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