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Zoopharmacognosy + my interview for Johnny Vedmore's podcast
A quick post, for a change!
This is a very quick post to share two things.
One, Dr. Mercola published my article about zoopharmacognosy, i.e. animals who self-medicate. Sometimes my curiosity about the world leads me down random rabbit holes, the subject of self-medicating animals is one of those. It is really quite fascinating, both in general and in a philosophical sense.
What’s interesting is that just a few years ago, the BBC (!!) was okay with talking about allowing animals to “treat themselves” by letting them choose a remedy from a range of medicinal substances and herbs. Now though? Forget about it. Even licensed human doctors aren’t allowed to prescribe anything that deviates from the party line! Anyway, here is the article about animals:
“Zoopharmacognosy” is a type of animal behavior in which animals self-medicate
Many species of animals are known to select and ingest or topically apply plants, soils and insects with medicinal properties, in order to prevent or reduce the harmful effects of pathogens, toxins, etc.
Baboons in Ethiopia eat the leaves of a plant to combat the flatworms that cause schistosomiasis
Fruit flies lay eggs in plants containing high ethanol levels when they detect parasitoid wasps, a way of protecting their offspring
Red and green macaws, along with many animals, eat clay to aid digestion and kill bacteria
Pregnant elephants in Kenya eat the leaves of some trees to induce delivery
And two, I was interviewed by Johnny Vedmore for his podcast, and we went down more rabbit holes.
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