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California Coyotes Disrupting Traffic May Be Tripping on Shrooms (Or Some Other More Likely, Boring Reason)

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Drivers along California’s Marin county stretch of Highway 1 have been facing a problem that seems like the beginning of a Native-American-themed horror film. Multiple drivers have reported incidents of being stared down by coyotes, who then run up to the cars, forcing them to stomp on the brakes as the coyote sniffs all around the car. They eventually wander away.

The Marin Humane Society has been notified, and it is attempting to get to the bottom of things. The director of marketing and communications for the society told the Pacific Sun that there are three possible causes for this kind of behavior.

The first, and least probable, is rabies. In the final stages of the disease, animals become aggressive similar to how the coyotes are “attacking” the cars. However, the coyote attacks have been going on for three weeks—if the coyotes had rabies, they probably would have died already.

The next, and most likely, is people have been feeding the coyotes. This is bad for the same reason that feeding bears in campgrounds is bad—if the animal gets food from a human, it figures it can get more and starts to act very aggressively.

However, the final, and most entertaining, possibility, is that these coyotes are, like, super high. Locally, there is a mushroom called the fly agaric (amanita muscaria).


Fly Agaric

Hey! It’s the mushroom from the Mario games!
Photo: Visa Kopu

These mushrooms have hallucinogenic properties. So, while not probable, it is possible that those coyotes think that the cars coming down the road are the Earth Mother coming to them, but as soon as they get close, she inexplicably turns into a tiny hill covered in trees, which sing to them in the language of the coyote.

Who knows? Maybe the Highway 1 coyote will end up as a prophet for his people.

News Source: The Pacific Sun