Goji/ wolfberry

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biochemnerd808

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I picked up a goji (wolfberry) bush today (so I can eat the berries).

Both the leaves and the berries are edible for mammals and birds (deer and rabbits partake readily, and humans can eat the leaves, too). I did a search for goji and tortoises... obviously I'm not giving them the fruit, but I was curious about the leaves. The Tortoise Table classifies goji leaves as toxic to tortoises (http://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/site/plants_19.asp?mode=main&catID=493)

I am curious why this is? I always err on the safe side, but the biochem nerd in me wants to know. If the levels of alkaloid atropine are high enough to harm a tortoise, why can mammals and birds eat the leaves?
 
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