Jungle Revelers (When beasts take drugs to race or relax, things get zooey)
Ronald L. Siegel, Omni, March 1986, pp. 70-72, 74, 100

p. 82

“In his mind Larry Lancaster was flying over a duck farm. He walked like a duck, quacked like a duck, and told visitors that he was Donald Duck. Then he savagely stabbed a man to death. The Los Angeles Police Department reported that Larry had become an animal after taking a mind-altering drug.”

“In 1950, for instance, Donald Duck was shown hallucinating from a broken bottle of ether and crashing his car into a fire hydrant. After another cartoon car crash in 1951, a medicine man gave Donald peyote tea that put him in a coma for six weeks. The alcohol that spilled into Dumbo’s water got him so drunk he saw pink elephants. Wile E. Coyote overdosed on a high-speed tonic while trying to catch the elusive Road Runner. Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Wood Woodpecker, Fritz the Cat, and other characters have had animated highs with everything from marijuana to psychedelics.”

“Ducks forage a wide variety of narcotic plants. Elephants get playfully drunk on fermented fruit. Pigs are fond of marijuana and other psychoactive weeds. And birds consume the stupefying nectars of flowers. When given a choice of literally thousands of plant drugs in nature, animals select the same types of substances regularly consumed by humans.”

P. 83

“In the mountains of Sikkim in northeastern India, for instance, weary horses eagerly consume bitter tea leaves. And when our pack donkeys in Mexico seemed particularly overworked, they deliberately grazed on wild tobacco.”

“Another example of drug use in the animal kingdom comes from ethologist Eugene Marais, who lived among the African baboons. Marais found that while free-ranging baboons suck the flowers of wild tobacco, they avoid the leaves that contain most of the nicotine. Captive baboons, on the other hand, “beg for tobacco and eat or chew it with all the zest of a long-established habit.””

“The animal drunk that most intrigued our group, though, was the African elephant, a mammal strongly attracted to the odor of ripening mgongo, doum, and marula fruit. We found that when elephants arrived late for the feast, the fruit had usually fermented to a 7 percent alcohol solution.”

“Recent experiments in a spacious California game park have verified this stress factor. The studies found that elephants seemed to enjoy drinking small amounts of a 7 percent alcohol solution that caused mild changes in mood. Alcohol intake increased, however, when the elephants were crammed into a smaller preserve with other savanna animals....

‘When the preserve was enlarged to its normal size and bothersome gazelles and rhinos were evicted, alcohol drinking returned to normal levels. Several months later, with the preserve rattled by construction crews, elephants congregated in the area where alcohol had once been available.”

“Catnip appeals to cats because it contains the hallucinogen nepetalactone, which mimics a natural sex pheromone. Both catnip and its Japanese cousin, matatabi, are used repeatedly by leopards and other large cats despite increasing tolerance and brain damage. In fact, biologists have recently discovered that a dominant gene automatically guides cats to catnip if the plant can be found.”

“Even when drug plants don’t ease an animal’s pain or stoke its libido, the sensation may be worth seeking out. Indeed, our research indicates that a wide range of animals munch on hallucinogenic mushrooms, bark, and roots just for the fun of it. In the emerald forests of Colombia, jaguars gnaw the nauseating psychedelic bark of yaje, a habit the Indians believe sends the cats on flights to other worlds. Boars dig for the hallucinogenic roots of iboga, a West African shrub with showy flowers that send the animals into wild frenzy. Ethologist Jane Goodall once observed a jackal spinning like a top after eating a mysterious mushroom. And members of my group have confirmed the use of “magic” psilocybin mushroom sby dogs and cattle in Hawaii.”

“Reindeer on the Asian tundra ignore their normal diet of lichens whenever they smell the red-capped Amanita muscaria mushroom, a psychedelic used by Siberian shamans.... Reindeer also become intoxicated on human urine containing the active metabolites of previously eaten mushrooms; the craving is so intense that travelers are warned not to relieve themselves in the open when reindeer are around.”

“But unlike animals in [controlled studies], animals in nature tend to regulate drug use, thereby avoiding large-scale problems. Their strategy is to ingest the minimum effective amounts of the drug plants, thus lowing the risks of poisoning while maximizing recreation and relief. This balancing act is helped by the relatively low concentrations of alkaloids and alcohols in plants as compared with purified, man-made preparations. For example, coca contains less than 1 percent cocaine, together with proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals, providing a nutritious and stimulating boost for animals and Indians; neither have ever died from ingesting coca.”
and there-in lies the rub - Stampy the elephant can be trusted cause he doesn't have reliable sources :lol: