Dolphins Get High on Eating Pufferfish

12.30.13 Andy Cush

Revelation 1: chewing on pufferfish has an intoxicating effect (and can also slowly kill you, if you eat enough). Revelation 2: Dolphins know this, and use the spiny fish as a means to get, like, really high.

News.com.au describes a scene in a BBC documentary about everyone’s favorite marine mammals:

“This was a case of young dolphins purposefully experimenting with something we know to be intoxicating,” said Rob Pilley, a zoologist who worked as a producer on the series.

“After chewing the puffer and gently passing it round, they began acting most peculiarly, hanging around with their noses at the surface as if fascinated by their own reflection.”

And like any experienced drug user, dolphins appear to know their product.

“The dolphins were specifically going for the puffers and deliberately handling them with care. Dolphins seem to be experts on how to prepare puffers and how to handle them.”

Dolphins: just as smart as everyone says they are!

(Photo: Adam Fagen/Flickr)