Being a fake medical expert has become a bit passe, frankly. And that expertise came after my rarely discussed time as environmental science expertise honed as a lowly paralegal/legislative & regulatory assistant/lobbyist.
So I figure I’m ready for a new challenge. And just in time for World IBD Day, I’m takin’ on physics!
The Physics of Poop, of course. And I think you will agree that I do have the expertise. And the, ummm, credentials. And I don’t have to go far for sample collection.
You see, there’s an article I read. (Of course there’s an article.)
You know it’s a good article, because this is the photo that accompanies the article:
The authors, David Hu and Patricia Yang, studied poop every which way but Sunday. Well, maybe Sunday, too. Because there are some chores that simply must be done 7 days a week.
They discovered that herbivores produced “floaters” and carnivores plopped “sinkers.” And apparently “stinkers” too, as tigers apparently have the stinkiest poop and panda poop is positively precious.
Bigger animals, not surprisingly, are more prodigious poopers, but interestingly, the speed of poop production is similar regardless of the size of the animal:
Assuming a bell curve distribution, 66 percent of animals take between 5 and 19 seconds to defecate. It’s a surprisingly small range, given that elephant feces have a volume of 20 liters, nearly a thousand times more than a dog’s, at 10 milliliters.
In all honesty, the attraction of the article wasn’t the significant increase in my already vast knowledge and understanding of poop.
Nope. There were two reasons.
First, it’s the fact that this article alerted me to the existence of NASA’s
Space Poop Challenge
I think you will admit that I should be an automatic contender.
More importantly, this article gave me something to write about to celebrate World IBD Day. And while I personally celebrate every day, you, personally can have fun with poop on World IBD Day. Don’t say I never gave you anything.
But WAIT! There’s MORE! After this post went to press, I found this article.
Golly. Studying poop has become a 24/7 commitment for me.