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Is the Northern Territory hiding a new species of ‘magic’ mushroom?

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Soil samples taken from Kakadu and Litchfield Nationwide Parks within the Northern Territory have revealed traces of what scientists consider is a brand new species of psychedelic mushroom. 

The invention was made by Alistair McTaggart, a fungal genetics researcher at College of Queensland, who’s main a undertaking to curate Australia’s first legal collection of native “magic” mushrooms.

“I used to be researching the distribution of one other magic mushroom known as gold tops, and located DNA sequences of this unknown fungi,” Dr McTaggart stated.

“This mushroom was found from DNA sequences within the soil and we could be very assured that it might produce psilocybin, a naturally occurring psychedelic compound.”

A smiling man in a lab coat holds dried mushrooms on cardboard.
Dr Alistair McTaggart is creating Australia’s first assortment of native magic mushrooms.(Provided: Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Meals Innovation)

Dr McTaggart stated it was arduous to know what the mushroom would seem like, however he felt “Kakadu’s magic mushroom” may seem like Psilocybe brunneocystidiata, a species found within the Seventies in rainforests in Papua New Guinea.

“I might like to get my arms on one, or for anybody to get their arms on one, so we will make a spore-print after which protect its biodiversity in a herbarium.”

A cluster of golden-topped mushrooms.
It’s estimated there are 20 to 30 species of magic mushrooms in Australia.(Provided: Caine Barlow)

Large future for historic mushrooms

It’s estimated there are as much as 30 species of magic mushrooms in Australia, a few of that are native, and a few of which have been launched.

Dr McTaggart stated it was thrilling to see Australian-led analysis into these mushrooms to probably fight diseases resembling PTSD, main depressive problems, habit and consuming problems.

An aerial shot of Jim Jim Falls
Scientists consider there’s a new species of magic mushroom in Kakadu Nationwide Park.(Fb: Kakadu Air)

He stated numerous analysis round psilocybin was centered on advantages for people, however he felt its potential use in agriculture and particularly animal welfare advantages was “under-explored”.

“Psilocybin has use in [treating] nervousness in people, we do not perceive the consequences of psilocybin on animals very nicely, however I consider slaughterhouses and what this might imply for the meat [processing] business.

“I feel it is a future space of analysis that is actually fascinating,” he informed ABC Rural. 

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