Navigation Links
Drunken elephants: The marula fruit myth

Dispelling years of anecdotes in travelogues, the popular press, and scholarly works, biologists from the University of Bristol argue that it is nearly impossible for elephants to become intoxicated from eating the fruit of the marula tree.

"Elephants display many behavioral characteristics viewed as positive traits in humans, often causing us to identify with them in anthropomorphic ways," write Steve Morris, David Humphreys, and Dan Reynolds in a forthcoming paper in Physiological and Biochemical Zoology. "The tipsy pachyderm [is] a view bolstered perhaps by a mutual desire for the fruits of the marula tree."

Based on reports of elephants accessing stores of wine or beer, the three-ton mammals clearly have a taste for alcohol. They also have a demonstrated fondness for marula fruit, gathering around trees when the fruit is in season. Fallen marula fruit may naturally ferment to an ethanol content of approximately 3 percent after three or four days.

However, elephants have shown a clear preference for marula fruit still on the tree. Disregarding a large fruit pit, the metabolism of alcohol over time, and the unlikeliness of total ethanol absorption, a three-ton elephant gorging itself quickly on nothing but marula fruit would still be hard-pressed to ingest enough ethanol to reach a blood alcohol content indicative of inebriation.

"Assuming all other model factors are in favour of inebriation, the intoxication would minimally require that the elephant avoids drinking water, consumes a diet of only marula fruit at a rate of at least 400 percent normal maximum food intake, and with a mean alcohol content of at least 3 percent," write the authors.

Instead, the authors posit that an intoxicant other than alcohol may be responsible for "tipsy" behavior. Elephants also eat the bark of the marula tree, which is home to a beetle pupae traditionally used to poison arrow tips.


'"/>

Source:University of Chicago Press Journals


Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Master gene controls healing of skin in fruit flies and mammals
2. UI researcher studies deafness in fruit flies, humans
3. Gap-climbing fruit flies reveal components of goal-driven behaviors
4. Hormones and growth: The control of body size and developmental growth rate in fruit flies
5. Aloe vera coating may prolong freshness, safety of fruits and vegetables
6. Hanging baskets of sex and death help fruit growers
7. Researchers find gland that tells fruit flies when to stop growing
8. Past experience of pheromones induces dominant courtship behavior in fruit flies
9. A resetting signal keeps circadian rhythm on track in Drosophila fruit flies
10. UCSD study finds anthrax toxins also harmful to fruit flies
11. New gene reduces retinal degeneration in fruit flies
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Drunken elephants The marula fruit myth

(Date:11/18/2014)... Nov. 17, 2014 The Parenteral Drug Association (PDA) ... agencies will speak and at least seven more will participate ... the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington D.C. ... to have significant support from the regulatory agencies in ... in our effort to help advance the use ...
(Date:11/12/2014)... , Nov. 12, 2014 Crossmatch™, a ... that its U.are.U ® fingerprint readers have been ... in Central Mexico . The bakery ... to eliminate payroll issues caused by employees clocking in ... the U.are.U fingerprint readers, Montparnasse relied on paper timecards ...
(Date:11/7/2014)... Researchers led by Dr. Debra Auguste, associate professor, ... at The City College of New York, have ... treatment for one of the most aggressive forms ... (TNBCs) have a high mortality rate owing to ... effective therapeutic options. However, Professor Auguste,s team, discovered ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):FDA's Janet Woodcock, EMA's Emer Cooke Headline PDA Quality Metrics Conference 2Montparnasse Pasteleria Achieves Time and Attendance Transparency with Crossmatch U.are.U Fingerprint Readers 2
... An in-depth study by Sandia National Laboratories and ... waste and dedicated energy crops could sustainably replace nearly ... The goal of the "90-Billion Gallon Biofuel ... large volume of cellulosic biofuel could be sustainably produced, ...
... that road salt used throughout the winter is making ... aquatic life and drinking water. The research indicates ... judicious use of road salt could help lessen the ... a video with research team leader Heinz Stefan, go ...
... elevations in Arizona,s Santa Catalina Mountains as summer temperatures ... Arizona in Tucson. The flowering ranges of 93 ... to where the same species flowered the previous ten ... the region increased about 1.8 degree Fahrenheit (1 degree ...
Cached Biology News:Biofuels can provide viable, sustainable solution to reducing petroleum dependence 2Biofuels can provide viable, sustainable solution to reducing petroleum dependence 3U of Minnesota research finds most road salt is making it into the state's lakes and rivers 2Plants take a hike as temperatures rise 2Plants take a hike as temperatures rise 3
(Date:11/22/2014)... MI (PRWEB) November 22, 2014 ... to simulate the proper management of life-like respiratory ... test lung devices . Grand Rapids-based, Michigan Instruments ... to donate two of the respiratory simulation units ... $15,000 each. Grand Valley and Muskegon Community College ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... The science of light and how ... more than 200 primary students in a traveling program ... of Otago Physics Department and funded by an ... of the university’s OSA/SPIE Student Chapter visited six primary ... children from small, rural schools hands-on lessons in optics ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... (PRWEB) November 20, 2014 The November ... available as an open access journal featuring the following ... fluorescent proteins to preserve photoresponsiveness in the retina , ... fluorescent in situ hybridization using chromogenic substrates in zebrafish ... DNA, RNA, and protein electrophoresis , Nuclear ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... DIEGO , Nov. 20, 2014 ... has been dosed in its Phase 1 trial ... cisplatin for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma ... Group is conducting clinical trials on ADI-PEG 20, ... agents, for the treatment of several other indications, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 2Michigan Instruments Donates Two Respiratory Simulation Training and Test Lung (TTL) Devices to Grand Valley State University 3Optics and photonics outreach programs share science, spark fascination with light 2Optics and photonics outreach programs share science, spark fascination with light 3BioTechniques: The International Journal of Life Science Methods Announces the Publication of the November 2014 Issue—Available in Print and Online 2BioTechniques: The International Journal of Life Science Methods Announces the Publication of the November 2014 Issue—Available in Print and Online 3Polaris Group Announces Treatment of First Patient in Phase 1 Study of ADI-PEG 20 plus Pemetrexed and Cisplatin in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma And Non-Squamous Non-Small Cell Lung Carcinoma 2
... at the University of East Anglia (UEA) could contribute ... agricultural waste to generate clean electricity. Published today ... National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), the researchers have ... some bacteria survive by ,breathing rocks,. The findings ...
... , , COLUMBIA, Md., Dec. 16 ... results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended October 31, ... from $90.4 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008. Net ... fourth quarter of fiscal 2009, a 5% increase compared with $10.5 ...
... , , LAS VEGAS, Dec. ... umbilical cord blood stem cell preservation company ( http://www.cordblood-america.com ) ... biological insurance policy, to families nationwide and internationally, said today that ... so far in the fourth quarter of 2009 and total debt ...
Cached Biology Technology:'Rock-breathing' bacteria could generate electricity and clean up oil spills 2Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 2Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 3Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 4Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 5Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 6Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 7Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 8Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 9Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 10Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 11Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 12Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 13Martek Announces Fourth Quarter and FY 2009 Financial Results 14Cord Blood America Says 2009 Debt Reduction Tops $10 Million 2Cord Blood America Says 2009 Debt Reduction Tops $10 Million 3
Donor feline serum and plasma...
NPT1 (M-19)...
... is an ultra-compact pump available in single head ... ideal for use in portable air and gas ... pump works well in environments where DC operation, ... size are critical., Offers ultra-compact size, long ...
Total Proteins from over 50 different human Alzheimer, Diabetic, Liver Cirrhosis, and Lupus diseased tissues are available....
Biology Products: