Kilogram of Elephant Tranquilizer, Carfentanil, Seized in Canada


Carfentanil is the sedative zookeepers and veterinarians use to tranquilize elephants and other extremely large mammals. It is 100 times stronger than Fentanyl, which is 100 times stronger than morphine. Unfortunately, it is also a recent addition to heroin, and it is killing people at alarming rates. July in Ohio this year produced 141 overdoses from Carfentanil laced heroin. Recently, well over 50 overdoses were reported in the Pennsylvania area.

In June, the largest illegal concentration of Carfentanil to date was discovered at a mail center in Vancouver, Canada. Weighing one kilogram, the amount discovered is enough to kill the entire population of Canada and NYC combined. Over 50 million fatal doses can be made from the one kilogram seized.


How was it found and what is it used for?

The package was discovered by the Canadian Border Services Agency in a mailroom in Vancouver. Addressed to a man named Joshua Wrenn in Calgary and sent from China, the package said it contained printer accessories. This isn’t the first time Carfentanil was seized in Canada, although the first seizure was much less substantial.

Drug dealers use Carfentanil as an additive to heroin, making the drug much more potent. The problem is that less than a microgram can be fatal, and drug dealers surely aren’t out to save lives. The amount of Carfentanil put into heroin, when added, is impossible to detect.

Forensic chemist Brian Escamilla weighed in on the fatal aspect of such little Carfentanil being needed to kill. Escamilla said, “You’d have to really be looking, especially if you mixed it with another drug like heroin — there’d be a hell of a lot more heroin in there than there would be Carfentanil, and so it would just be a blip on the screen. Whether the toxicologists pick that up or not … that could easily be missed.”


Elephant sedatives are becoming an epidemic?

Use of Elephant tranquilizers and similar substances in heroin is becoming an epidemic. In Canada alone, this is the second Carfentanil bust. Fentanyl is also commonly used in heroin. Over the last six years, Canada has seen 84 seizures of Fentanyl. British Columbia has even declared a public health emergency regarding the two substances.

Let’s bring it home. Carfentanil as used in heroin is a relatively new phenomenon. Still, busts have occurred in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and even Florida. Regarding Fentanyl, major busts have recently occurred in New York, Maryland, New Hampshire, and even in Georgia. Respectively, 6,000 doses, 510 grams, 2.5 kilograms, and 40 kilograms were seized.

Unfortunately, do enough research and you can find a bust for Fentanyl or Carfentanil in every state; apparently now too, other countries. As if there were not enough reasons to avoid heroin, the risk of there being elephant tranquilizers in it should be enough to make anyone stray. As Jim Nice, police chief of Akron, OH said in an interview with CBS, ““Most of the deaths from heroin overdoses are coming from too much fentanyl being cut into that.” Carfentanil, remember, is 100x stronger.