United States: National parks ask visitors not to lick the hallucinogenic frogs!

Some requests are more extravagant than others. The US National Park Service recently urged visitors not to lick the skin of the Sonoran Desert Toad, known for its psychedelic venom. This approximately 18 cm amphibian, one of the largest in the United States, with olive green or mottled brown skin, secretes toxic substances with coveted hallucinogenic effects.

You can get sick if you touch the frog or ingest its poisonUS National Parks warned last week on their Twitter account. As is the case with most species you encounter in a national park, whether it’s a banana slug, an unfamiliar mushroom, or a large toad with glow-in-the-dark eyes , please refrain from licking them “.

This warning did not specify the number of toad-licking people who reside in northern Mexico and the southwestern United States, but this practice appears in animated television series such as the simpsons and The Griffin.

To defend themselves from predators, they secrete a substance “5-MeO-DMT”, nicknamed the “God molecule”, which is a hallucinogenic psychotropic. Personalities, such as boxing champion Mike Tyson, have spoken of the use of this substance for therapeutic, recreational, and even spiritual purposes. The experience usually lasts between 15 and 30 minutes and is considered very intense. But this poison can also be dangerous for humans according to scientists.

Hunted en masse for its poisonous skin, the Sonoran Desert Toad has already almost disappeared in California according to an article by New York Times published in March 2022.

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