It’s no fishing trip tripping on fish. In Arabic, it is known as “the fish that makes dreams.” This is no exaggeration. A single meal of salema porgy may contain a toxin that causes several days of vivid, sometimes frightening hallucinations, which scientists equate with the effects of taking LSD.
The small, golden-striped sea bream lives off Africa’s East Coast and throughout the Mediterranean. Ancient Romans supposedly treated salema porgy like a recreational drug, while Polynesians employed its psychedelic powers during ceremonies. The effects can last for days and may include “ demonic hallucinations .” A 2006 study that examined two cases of men who ate salema porgy on the French Riviera noted that one man had auditory hallucinations of “human screams and bird squealing,” while the other “was not able to drive anymore as he was seeing giant arthropods around his car.”
Scientists understand very little about the forces at […]