Cool Kangaroos Have Methane Message for Cows

Thu, 2007-12-06 17:22Richard Littlemore
Richard Littlemore's picture

Cool Kangaroos Have Methane Message for Cows

When the solutions for global warming seem too terribly daunting, it's good to consider the latest rays of hope: today, for instance, we find that kangaroo farts may hold the key to a cooler future.

The Telegraph reports that a form of bacteria that lives in 'roo tummies helps the digestion process so much that 'roo flatus passes almost entirely without the powerful (and smelly) greenhouse gas, methane.

If this bacteria could be passed safely to cows and sheep, it would enrich the energy potential of their food while reducing a statistically significant contributor to global warming.

Previous Comments

err….not that it changes the point you’re making, but a clarification: Methane’s actually odorless. The sulfur compounds produced by anaerobic digestion accompanying the methane are a whole different story however….

I’m not real big on the alteration of gut fauna; perhaps I’m having a kneejerk reaction to introducing species to the gut ecosystem. Does anyone know what kangaroo tastes like? Does anyone know if replacing introduced cows with introduced ‘roos would have a positive or negative effect? Maybe we should just promote less carnivory?

PS Agreeing with the previous comment, methane (natural gas) has the odor added to it so that you can tell when it’s leaking and your house will blow up.

er, wouldn’t it make more sense to just eat kangaroos instead of cows?

great herds of kangaroos being driven to market by Rooboys.

Introducing kangaroo microbes into the cow’s rumen -
QDPI&F seem to think there is a production advantage in it too.

http://www.dpi.qld.gov.au/cps/rde/xchg/dpi/hs.xsl/30_1962_ENA_HTML.htm

http://www.dpi.qld.gov.au/cps/rde/xbcr/dpi/RevolutionaryScience-GutFeeling.pdf

(and to put to bed a popular myth - methane is belched from the mouths of cows and sheep as part of the way ruminant digestion works - not farted !)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enteric_fermentation

Termites also produce lost of methane and there are vast numbers through the tropics and sub-tropics. Can’t do much about that though.

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