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Jamie McMillan
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I think castoreum contains a salicylate - basically, aspirin - concentrated from the willow bark that the beavers ate. So the medicine worked! But why does the beaver concentrate saiicylate in a scent-gland? My theory is that it gives information to other beavers about the food supply (more salicylate, more healthy willows in the area) and maybe the health of the beaver (more scent, has eaten plenty of good willow). It may be just a pungent scent unique to bark-eating beavers though. Now explain the Halcyon....
Toggle Commented Feb 22, 2014 on Beavers On The Run at Medieval manuscripts blog
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Feb 22, 2014