July 18, 2008

Friday scatblogging — a pachydermic problem

San Diego Wild Animal Park, a subsidiary of the San Diego Zoo, has a big problem with elephants. And, lions, tigers, antelope and whatever else is in the park also can be a big problem, or at least part of a big problem.

No, not the animals themselves, to be precise, but their leavings. The elephantine version is pictured at left, in somebody's home! Ahh, the things you can find online.

And, it can’t be used for other things:
Randy Rieches, curator of mammals at the Wild Animal Park, said the park once considered using its copious animal dung to produce methane, a colorless, odorless gas that can be used for energy.

However, Rieches said, the large amount of undigested hay, bark and tree boughs in the dung of its two largest poop producers — elephants and rhinos — made the prospect untenable.

A baby Asian elephant like the one pictured at left, will grow up to produce 300 pounds of poop a day, making these animals the primary offenders

And, at the park, workers have to clean up not only after that, but a total of 6,000 pounds a day. That’s two and a half dump trucks worth of scat!
Though elephants eat about 100 pounds of food per day, they produce 300 pounds of dung, Ellyn Hae said. The extra mass is created by the 40 gallons of water the 4-ton creatures suck up each day.

Mmmm, fiber!

Oh, and given that we are talking about elephants, insert GOP joke here.

More seriously, children get educated in the various diets and aliamentary habits of the different animals.

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