Skip to comments.'Puff, puff, pass': How WA's dolphins are using blowfish to get high [Australia]
Posted on 02/10/2017 2:48:11 PM PST by Red Badger
In what can only be described as a youngster doing the 'puff, puff, pass', West Australian dolphins may be using blowfish - or 'blowies' - to get high, scientists have found.
Murdoch University researcher Krista Nicholson, who monitors dolphins occupying the Peel-Harvey coastal waters off Mandurah, said there were several records of them interacting with blowfish in estuaries and coastal waters around the world.
The young dolphin Huubster tosses a blowfish in the air. Photo: Mandurah Dolphin Research Project
She said that in Australia, scientists had seen juveniles mouthing blowies in the Leschenault estuary in WA's South West and a sub-adult dolphin carrying an inflated blowie for a few hours in the Kimberley.
Blowies have a lethal toxin called tetrodotoxin, present in their skin, flesh and internal organs.
If consumed, this toxin can be deadly to predators, including humans.
A BBC documentary, Dolphins - Spy in the Pod, filmed them chewing on a blowie and "passing the puffer fish around", she said.
According to the documentary, small doses of the toxin have a narcotic effect and the program considered it as recreational drug use by dolphins.
Ms Nicholson said this view was disputed in the scientific community, with some saying the small amounts of tetrodotoxin made the animals feel only numb, not high.
She had observed dolphins in the South West using other items such as seagrass or crabs to play with, so it was possible their treatment of blowies was part of the same behaviour.
A calf called Huubster born in the Dawesville Cut in 2016 had taken a special interest in tossing and chewing blowfish lately, Ms Nicholson had observed.
On January 24, while other group members travelled slowly toward the ocean, Huubster was swimming belly-up tossing an inflated blowie up in the air.
He repeatedly let it loose, only to capture and toss it again.
On a separate occasion, four days later, Ms Nicholson observed Huubster again tossing a blowie repeatedly in the surf just north of Lancelin.
This must be why Hootie said the dolphins make him cry
Eating Fugu in Japan made my lips slightly numb, so all I can say to my watery brethren is ... Carry on Dude.
NFL star Ricky Williams [Miami DOLPHINS]
caught multiple times for smoking weed
The whole episode is bizarre.
Laughing out loud for jokes that follow. Bowing head sadly that young dolphins don't have parental guidance. Must get high, must get high.
It’s just medicinal.
Maybe they’re like dolphin squeaky toys.
Don’t Bogart that blowie dude.....
I feel sorry for the krill.
Ever seen a dolphin with the munchies?
Next up - Dolphin Rehab, A 12 Step program, sponsored by PETA. Supported by tax dollars
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.