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Smoking Toad Venom
References in the popular media
Compiler Unknown
Missionary for toad venom is facing charges
(B. Shepard cherged with possession of hallucinogenic substance)_

New York Times (Late New York Edition) p19 (Sec 1) February 20, 1994

Bob Shepard, 41-year-old teacher at a local nature center, has been arrested for the possession of bufotenine, an illegal hallucinogenic chemical found in the venom of the Colorado River toads. Shepard told investigators that he dried and smoked the venom, the powers of which he is interested in helping others understand.



Can't Lick 'em? Then smoke 'em
(Bufo toads with hallucinogenic properties)

Newsweek v199 p63 June 15, 1992

Tabloids and television shows have spread the myth that licking secretions of the common cane toad, Bufo Marinus, will lead to hallucinations, but this idea was debunked in an article in the June issue of the anthropology journal Ancient Mesoamerica. According to one of the article's authors, Andrew Weil, the true hallucinogenic amphibian is Bufo Alvarius, the Sonoran desert toad. Weil says that the toad's secretions are a powerful hallucinogen when they are dried and smoked in a pipe.



Bufo abuse
(cane toad secretions as an hallucinogenic)

Scientific American v263 p26-7 August, 1990

The cane toad (Bufo Marinus), once regarded as a mere nuisance, has become the subject of antidrug hysteria and international trade negotiations. The toad, which is indigenous to the warmer regions od the Americas, was exported to Australia in the 1930s to control beetles infesting cane fields. It has become so abundant there that Australians have launched toad extermination campaigns. Most of the current attention, howeveer, focuses on the hallucinogenic venom with which the animal repels predators. Because of its unpleasant side effects, the toad's venom never became popular as a recreational drug, but unsubstantiated rumors of its use persist. The Australians have persuaded the Chinese, whose traditional medicine includes compounds from other toad species, to study the venom's therapeutic potential.