Microkhan by Brendan I. Koerner

Winged AA

August 26th, 2009 · No Comments

ProgneChalybeaIs it possible to ever tire of zootherapy research? We reckon not, and this study (PDF) from the Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine supports our thesis rather strongly. The paper looks at the use of animals as medicine in a rural corner of Northeast Brazil. Our favorite listed remedy involves the Gray-breasted martin, known to the lab-coat set as Progne chalybea. The Brazilians surveyed swear by the animals’ effectiveness in treating alcoholism—as long as you’re willing to consume the entire bird, feathers and all.

We’d love to see some sort of controlled study that assesses the bird’s effectiveness versus that of Antabuse. Though we do think there might be some ethical complications in coming up with a placebo bird.


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