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Pick Your Poison
MAY 2005
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Video: Fatal Attraction
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Audio: Botox & Piano
Online Extra: Toxic Tale 13
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Poison Photo 2

2 of 5
Better Than Bait
Photograph by Cary Wolinsky

Somewhere along the continuum of history, humans discovered that poison can be useful—particularly for hunting. In Africa and Australia, poison released into ponds and small lakes kills fish. These fishermen at a stocked pond in northwestern Australia demonstrate the traditional use of an infusion of freshwater mangrove bark, a poison that stuns fish and makes them swim to the surface, where they are easily picked off with spears. "Man is the master borrower," says Tom Eisner, professor of chemical ecology at Cornell University. "We are constantly eavesdropping on nature."

Photo Fast Facts
Camera: Nikon F100
Film Type: Fujichrome Velvia 100
Lens: Nikkor 17-35mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/250 @ f/11

Weather Conditions: Hot and sunny
Time of Day: Late morning
Lighting Techniques: Available light
Special Equipment: To keep my equipment dry, I placed a small cooler inside an inner tube and tied the tube to me. The camera bag stayed in the cooler, which made it possible for me to move around in the pond with my lenses floating nearby.

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