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Background Information:

Fumonisin is a Fusarium-produced mycotoxin

Major crops affected:


Associated mold:

Fusarium verticillioides (F. moniliforme), and Fusarium proliferatum

Conditions favoring production:

Period of drought during the growing season followed by cool and moist conditions during pollination and kernel formation.


Equine: Equine leukoencephalomalacia (ELEM –characterized by facial paralysis, nervousness, lameness, ataxia, and inability to eat or drink), depression, aimless wandering, incoordination, weakness, blindness, head-pressing, coma, death from brain necrosis.
Swine: Porcine pulmonary edema (PPE) – Dyspnea, cyanosis of mucous membranes, weakness, recumbency, liver damage (pale & fatty liver), pancreatic necrosis, kidney damage, icterus, increased water consumption, fever, immunosuppression, decreased performance, and death. 
Cattle & Sheep: Inappetance, weight loss, mild liver damage (increase in liver enzymes), immunosuppression, and decreased milk production.
Poultry: Inappetance, weight loss, decreased performance, skeletal abnormalities, fatty liver, immunosuppression, inhomogeneous flocks, impaired feathering, and impaired intestinal health.

Dairyland Lab Packages that include Fumonisins:

  • Individual Mycotoxin request
  • Mycotoxin Basic Package
  • Mycotoxin Select Package
  • Mycotoxin Complete Package

Interpretation Guidelines

Interpretation Guidelines Level
Detection Limit 0.1 ppm
Concern Level (TRDM)* 1.1 - 3.3 ppm
Potentially Harmful Level** TRDM (Cattle) 6.7 - 11.1 ppm
Potentially Harmful Level** TRDM (Swine) 11.1 ppm
Potentially Harmful Level** TRDM (Equine)** 6.7 - 11.1 ppm

*Level indicating possible favorable conditions for mycotoxins and probable need for further testing of all feeds or the TMR.  Pending further tests, negative samples should be considered at concern levels in the presence of moderate symptoms and at harmful levels with marked symptoms.  Limit amounts fed if moderate performance effects are present.  Discontinue use at least temporarily if pronounced performance effects or acute clinical symptoms are present.  Closely observe animals and continue checking for other possible causes.

**Mycotoxins at these levels indicate probable involvement in performance effects or acute clinical symptoms.  Discontinue feeding at least temporarily in the presence of either type of symptoms.  Observe animals closely in the absence of symptoms and do further testing of all feeds or the TMR.

TRDM = total ration dry matter

FDA Action Levels

Class of Animals Corn and Corn By-Products  Total Ration
Equids and rabbits 5 ppm 1 ppm
Swine and catfish 20 ppm 10 ppm
Breeding ruminants, breeding poultry and breeding mink* 30 ppm 15 ppm
Ruminants ≥ 3 months old being raised for slaughter, mink being raised for pelt production 60 ppm 30 ppm
Poultry being raised for slaughter 100 ppm 50 ppm
All other species or classes of livestock and pet animals 10 ppm 5 ppm

*Includes lactating dairy cattle and hens laying eggs for human consumption


Adams, Richard S., Kenneth B. Kephart, Virginia A. Ishler, Lawrence J. Hutchinson, and Gregory W. Roth. “Mold and Mycotoxin Problems in Livestock Feeding.” Dairy Cattle Nutrition (Penn State Extension). Penn State Extension, n.d. Web. 17 Sep. 2013.

Carlson, M.P., and S.M. Ensley. Understanding Fungal (Mold) Toxins (Mycotoxins). University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources. June 2003. Web. 3 Feb. 2016

Coulombe, R.A., Jr. 1993. Symposium: Biological Action of Mycotoxins. Journal of Dairy Science. 76:880-891.

Diaz, D.E., W.M. Hagler, and L.W. Whitlow. “Mycotoxins in Feeds.” Feedstuffs. 15 Sep. 2010.

Gallo, A., G. Giubuerti, J.C. Frisvad, T. Bertuzzi, and K.F. Nielsen. Review on Mycotoxin Issues in Ruminants: Occurrence in Forages, Effects of Mycotoxin Ingestion on Health Status and Animal Performance and Practical Strategies to Counteract Their Negative Effects. Toxins 2015, 7, 3057-3111.

Whitlow, L.W., M.B. Genter, W.M. Hagler, Jr., J.A. Hansen, F.T. Jones, B.A. Mowrey, and M.H. Poore. (1994, 2007) Understanding and Coping with Effects of Mycotoxins in Livestock Feed and Forage. North Carolina State Cooperative Extension Service. Dec. 1994.

Yiannikouris, A., and Jean-Pierre Jouany. 2002. Mycotoxins in feeds and their fate in animals: a review. INRA, EDP Sciences. Anim. Res. 51 (2002) 81-99.

For more information call Dairyland Laboratories, Inc. at 608-323-2123 or contact us here.