Opium-addicted parrots swarm fields of poppies in north India to get high

Ursus Minor

Jedi Master
This is about parrots but not exactly about pet parrots (I hope it does fit in here though)

Opium-addicted parrots swarm fields of poppies in north India to get high


A video filmed on February 21 showed the birds frequenting poppy plantations and ripping up the plants to eat them, as it was reported they have gotten a taste for the narcotic effect of the flowers.

The parrots have become so addicted to the effect, that sometimes they are making 40 visits a day to get their fix.

Poppy farmers in the state of Madhya Pradesh in India have reportedly run into trouble as flocks of persistent parrots are rampaging through the poppy farms.

"One poppy flower gives around 20 to 25 grams of opium. But a large group of parrots feed on these plants around 30 to 40 times a day," one poppy cultivator in the Neemuch district of central India told Indian news site NDTV.com. "This affects the produce. These opium-addicted parrots are wreaking havoc."

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One farmer was quoted as saying that despite keeping a watch at all times, the parrots still manage to steal the poppies, which are a primary component to make opium.

The birds have learnt not to squawk during their raids so as not to attract attention.
Footage shows them heading back to the safety of high branches to enjoy their haul.
They will often sleep for hours after an opium feast and occasionally fall to their death in a dazed stupor.



Opium cultivation is a costly affair too. Since it is a drug, a farmer needs to have proper license in order to cultivate the plant.

Speaking about the bizarre behaviour of the birds, Dr R.S. Chundawat, Opium Specialist, Horticulture College, Mandsaur, said: "Opium gives the bird instant energy, much like a human intakes tea or coffee to derive instant energy.

"Once the feeling is experienced by the winged creatures, they have fallen prey to the addiction."
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Ursus Minor

Jedi Master
Sorry, I've found no way of reinserting a decent headline for the post. :-[
Could the moderators please do that for me? Thank you...
 
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