Camphor Laurel and Veterinary Concerns

Poultry Eggs Go Sterile

Numerous independent and widely spread reports exist of poultry, including Game Bird poultry, experiencing inedible eggs laid by hens which have seasonal or perennial access to/under mature Camphor laurel trees; when berries are eaten fresh the hens turn sterile during that season, and infertile, inedible camphor-smelling eggs are laid, if at all! It is not yet known if male poultry can be seasonally sterilised.

Hunter (1998) at Corndale was the first person to prove, with geese, that egg sterility is reversible, by keeping his free range flock of birds away from under the shady camphors which had apparently sterilised them in preceding years.

see also: Letter to Lismore Council regarding domestic or rock pigeons


Paul Gill, Veterinary Pathologist with NSW Agriculture at Wollongbar Agricultural Institute has recently (2000 pers.comm) described a feral, ex-domesticated pig killed on a farm near Dunoon, which had been observed eating Camphor bark and berries; on slaughter, the pig's flesh was in parts purple from the purple flesh of camphor fruits, and it also smelled of camphor.