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Dolphins caught chewing on fish to get high

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Dolphin tunaspycam
Dolphin tunaspycam

A new BBC documentary will show adolescent dolphins getting high by chewing on pufferfish. The fish secrete a toxin that gives the dolphins a buzz, and the crew on the upcoming show filmed male bottlenose dolphins passing around a puffer fish before acting "most peculiarly." The program's executive producer John Downer notes the dolphin were in a trancelike state, "hanging around with their noses at the surface as if fascinated by their own reflection."

Dolphins aren't the first animals caught getting high — moose have for many years been observed getting drunk by eating fermented apples. The footage was captured thanks to a number of bizarre contraptions created for the documentary Spy in the Pod. The crew modified remote-controlled cameras to resemble a tuna (pictured above), turtle, squid, and dolphin in order to film the animals without disturbing them.

In addition to inebriated Cetacea, the show will also feature evidence of symbiotic relationships between dolphin, stingray, and other fish, which teamed up on film to hunt smaller prey. The two-part show will premiere January 2nd in the UK, but the high dolphins won't make an appearance until the second episode airs on January 9th.