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02.02 – Coprophagy (Animals that eat poop)

The Single Acorn
02.02 - Coprophagy (Animals that eat poop)

Episode description:

What goes in must come out. And apparently what goes out can also come in again. That’s right. Poop. The forbidden snack. It’s gross enough to think about poop on its own, but there’s a certain unmatched biological revulsion that bubbles up when I think about eating poop. Or not that I think about eating poop, but when I do research on other animals that eat poop. As I’m chewing on these words, trying to figure out a way to frame this delicately, my dog’s looking up at me in utter confusion. We share a lot in common - a love for adventure, a passion for splashing in puddles, . But we just can’t share that same predilection for caprophagy. We’ll Boots, my poop-eating pooch, this one’s for you. This is the Single Acorn Podscat.

Produced by: Crow’s Path
Hosted by:
Professor Eweagey (aka Teage O’Connor), Glenn Etter, Dr. Christine Fleener
Supported by: Our patrons @
For more natural history:

Theme music by: Jake Weiss
Logo design by: Caitlin LaDulce
Ads by: Sara Siegel

  • Freud’s Developmental Theory and the Oral-Anal phase (source)
  • Tio de Nadal (link)
  • Fecal plugs in bears (source)
    • C.f. fecal transplant in humans (source)
  • Carolina Wren feeding and fecal sac removal ( video)
  • Why Birds Eat Fecal Sacs (link)
  • “Basic Opossum Care” (link, video)
  • Deer licking fawns rear end (video)
  • “Another coprophagous mammal is the mountain beaver…which extract fecal pellets from their anus individually with incisors. THey cache these in underground fecal chambers, reingesting them at a later time” from Feldhamer’s Mammalogy
  • Waste management in the leaf-cutting ant Atta colombica (link)
  • Pandas weight just 100g at birth, which is just .1% of the adult body size (source)
  • Giardia transmission mostly human-to-human from Participating in Nature by Thomas Elpel
  • Microbiological Studies of the Intestinal Microflora of the Koala, a Special Maternal Feces Consumed by Juvenile Koalas (source)
  • The Australian Dung Beetle Project (link)
  • We do feed chicken poop to cows: “Mad Cow California: Stop Feeding Cows Chicken Manure” (source)
  • Butterflies Behaving Badly: What They Don’t Want You to Know (link)
  • Black Ivory Coffee (elephant poop coffee)
  • Open Biome stool donation (source)
  • What Happens When You Plant a Pile of Bear Scat? (link)
  • It is Good to be Eaten by a Bear: Effects of Ingestion on Seed Germination (link)


More from Season 02 – Theses on Feces

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