Grass Got Kangaroos So High on DMT They Couldn't Walk Straight
This summer, Australians circulated viral videos of kangaroos staggering, falling, and jumping erratically. They looked drunk, but these animals were a different kind of intoxicated. They were tripping on DMT, the classic psychedelic sometimes called “the spirit molecule,” which they probably consumed by eating Phalaris aquatica, a species of European grass that now grows in Australia.
While DMT is usually safe in humans, research on Australian sheep suggests that too much of the phalaris grass can cause serious health issues, including changes to kidneys and the nervous system.
In the case of the kangaroo in the video below, local wildlife rescue personnel ended up euthanizing her because an animal’s erratic behavior and poor coordination caused by eating phalaris grass — a condition known by Australian farmers as “phalaris staggers” — can be dangerous, especially when it’s around humans.
In July, Emma Betuel reported that most of the available research on phalaris grass toxicity is on sheep, not kangaroos, so we don’t know exactly how the phalaris staggers occur inside their bodies.
While scientists and wildlife officials aren’t totally sure what’s wrong with the kangaroos, whether it’s DMT or some other compound in the grass that’s affecting them, it’s clear that the kangaroos are not acting normally.
As 2018 draws to a close, Inverse is counting down the 25 stories that made us go WTF. Some are gross, some are amazing, and some are just, well, WTF. In our ranking from least WTF to most WTF, this has been #25. Read the original article here.
Watch the full 25 WTF countdown in the video below.