Scientists Find Plant Suggesting Dinosaurs May Have Been High On LSD
The oldest specimen of grass has been discovered and it contains a fungus from which LSD was derived.
Dinosaurs lived off this kind of grass and, as a result, may have experienced bouts of hallucination, according to Pacific Standard.
Fourteen years ago, German paleontologist Joerg Wunderlich came upon a mysterious, fossilized plant in Myanmar, a nation in southern Asia formerly home to sauropods.
Those are the gigantic, plant-eating dinosaurs with four legs and long tails and necks like the Brontosaurus, Brachiosaurus and Diplodocus.
Oregon State paleo-entomologist Dr. George Poinar has now determined that Wunderlich had uncovered grass that grew over 100 million years ago, making it the oldest grass ever found.
On the tips of this grass was a substance similar to ergot, Daily Mail reports, a fungus that grows on rye and wheat.
Ingestion by humans causes hallucinations, delirium and convulsions.
Some historians believe the reason certain women were accused of being witches in Salem centuries ago was that they had eaten ergot and were merely exhibiting its side effects.
Ergot is mostly known, however, for producing the compounds scientists used to create LSD in the 1960s.
Scientists have found traces of grass in fossilized feces of sauropods that lived in what is now Myanmar, where the ergot was found.
This suggests the largest land animals in history could have been tripping out of control after their meals.
We can look and see what ergot does to lizards and birds today — and it does have an effect on them. But whether this occurred in dinosaurs, we just don't know. We don't know how much they would have had to eat.
Yet even more fascinating than the idea of dinosaurs tripping is the revelation that ergot has been around for up to 110 million years.
The grass in Wunderlich's fossil grew during the middle of the Cretaceous period, which is when the first grasses, flowers and even small mammals existed.
So for as long as there has been grass, there has been natural hallucinogens.
Life truly was a dream back then.