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Coastguard warns of poisonous plant along Cumbrian coast

Maryport Coastguard is warning dog walkers about sightings of the poisonous plant, known as Dead Man’s Fingers or Poisonous Parsnips, along the Cumbrian coast.

The warning follow reports on social media of potential Hemlock Water Dropwort roots having washed up at Silloth.

The plant is relatively common along parts of the UK coastline, but the roots – which look similar to a parsnip – are extremely toxic to both animals and humans.

The coastguard said: “We would urge dog owners to be extra vigilant and not to touch these items. As this is not a matter for HM Coastguard, we have consulted the Environment Agency who have advised that any findings of this nature would need to be reported to the local council.

“It is possible that recent stormy weather and tidal surges may have unearthed and uprooted these plants, then they have been washed ashore.”

tHE COASTGUARD ADDED: “If you think your dog may have come into contact or ingested any ‘poisonous parsnips’ it is advised to seek veterinary assistance as soon as possible. These plants also pose health risks to humans if physical contact is made so caution is advised at this time.”

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