Louisiana’s Next Worry? Sharks Eating Cocaine Floating in Gulf
A little earlier this year Louisiana cinema lovers could have found themselves nestled into a comfy chair in front of a large screen to watch the hilarious musings of an apex predator bear highly motivated to commit mayhem by copious amounts of cocaine. Cocaine Bear was a marginal success at the box office and we all joked about how "it could happen" but "probably wouldn't happen". Okay, wouldn't happen again.
Fast forward to now where almost every day thousands of pounds of illegal narcotics are being moved into the United States via vessels that traverse the distance between suppliers and customers via the Gulf of Mexico. Sometimes those drug boats sink and lose their cargo in the water. Sometimes the drug boats are intercepted and they toss their cargo in the water.
Have you ever wondered what happens to all of those packages of cocaine that get tossed overboard? Yeah, it's true a lot of it dissolves and becomes "watered down" by the ocean. Yet some of the packages, which are wrapped to be watertight, are consumed by sea creatures such as sharks.
In the past few years, several million dollars in cocaine has washed up on the beaches that Louisiana families love to visit in Florida and Alabama. It has also been noted that in the past few years, more and more shark sightings have taken place in and around those same beaches. Coincidence? Probably so.
But researchers have determined using dummy packaging that sharks will swim right up to a bundle of cocaine and bite it. How does cocaine affect the shark? Researchers have observed several species acting in bizarre ways and perhaps the drugs were to blame.
You can learn more about Cocaine Sharks tomorrow night, Wednesday, the Discovery Channel's Shark Week will focus on that aspect of sharks and their environment. The segment of the show is scheduled to air at 8 pm Louisiana time.
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Gallery Credit: Rob Carroll