Sheep Turn to Medicinal Cannabis as Greek Agricultural Crisis Deepens
Greek Agriculture Crisis Leads to Unconventional Grazing
The Greek agricultural sector, already under stress from a series of devastating natural disasters this summer, has encountered a peculiar twist. Disasters including heatwaves, forest fires, and floods have led to widespread destruction, significantly impacting the availability of animal feed. Resultantly, a flock of sheep in Thessaly, central Greece, found an unusual source of food – a greenhouse cultivating medicinal cannabis.
Sheep Feast on Cannabis Amidst Feed Shortage
Thessaly’s plains, once lush grazing lands for the sheep, were severely affected by the floods following the cataclysmic weather event known as “Storm Daniel.” The lack of available pastures led the flock to explore areas near the town of Almyros, where they broke into a greenhouse growing medicinal cannabis. The owner of the greenhouse, Yiannis Bourounis, reported that the sheep consumed approximately 100 kilograms of the crop.
The medicinal cannabis crop had already been significantly damaged by a previous heatwave and Storm Daniel. The unexpected visit from the hungry sheep resulted in the consumption of the remaining crop. Bourounis noted that following their cannabis feast, the sheep began to exhibit “strange” behavior.
Storm Daniel’s Destructive Impact on Livestock and Crops
Storm Daniel wreaked havoc in Thessaly earlier this month, leading to floods in multiple cities and villages. Greek authorities have reported the loss of over 100,000 animals and livestock in the disaster, with crops completely wiped out due to the massive amount of water. The storm, which claimed 17 human lives, has been described as the most intense in Greece’s history since meteorological records began in 1930.
The storms followed a summer marked by devastating forest fires, further burdening the country and its populace. The damage to crops and feed stores caused by these natural disasters has resulted in a significant feed shortage, which has left a large number of livestock in desperate need of food.
Climate Change Challenges and Future Measures
The Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, has acknowledged that the country faces significant challenges due to climate change. Extreme weather events such as forest fires and floods have become an increasing concern, with the agricultural sector being severely affected. His government is considering introducing more relief measures to aid those affected by natural disasters and to bolster the resilience of the agricultural sector.
Unintended Consequences: The Impact on Sheep
The impact of the feed shortage on livestock is significant, with numerous reports of livestock perishing due to lack of food. However, the incident involving the flock of sheep consuming medicinal cannabis highlights an unexpected and somewhat humorous consequence of the crisis. While the long-term effects of this unusual meal on the sheep remain to be seen, it exemplifies the lengths to which animals will go when traditional food sources become scarce.
The incident also raises questions about the safety and security of medicinal cannabis cultivation in the face of extreme weather events and other unexpected scenarios. As the climate crisis continues to intensify, such issues are likely to become increasingly relevant.
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