I had a walk round Agden this morning. Not that much around – a good few house martins around above the reservoir, and a flock of around 40 swallows on Smallfield Lane. A green woodpecker could be heard from a tree at Agden Side, and a few siskins were on the edges of the plantation at Agden Res.
A few of these around – fly agaric mushrooms. If anything says “don’t eat me” it’s these things, although, despite their highly poisonous nature they have been regarded for centuries by some cultures for their hallucinogenic properties, and widely used in some shamanic rituals. In ancient Siberia shamans would eat the mushrooms, and their followers would drink the shaman’s urine for second-hand psychoactive chemicals.
I don’t think I really have to tell anyone not to try this all this at home (especially the urine bit)… other symptoms of eating these can include nausea, vertigo, low blood pressure, amnesia, siezures, coma and (in the right doses) death. It also closely resembles deadly species such as death cap during the early parts of its life cycle, and can be easily be mixed-up with something even more lethal.