Closing The Loop With Exotic Manure
by Anna de la Vega
Connoisseur of manure Dan Corum, also known as Dr. Doo, the zoo’s Recycling and Compost Coordinator now runs the Fecal Fest due to popular demand for the zoo’s doo, which has been in high demand since 1985. The online lottery system runs during Autumn and Spring with residents winning the opportunity to fill up their own 100 gallon containers at a cost of $40. Since running the Fecal Fest the zoo are making savings of $100,000 in tipping fees a year and making an additional $20,000 in sales.
Manure is one of the most valuable resources for communities, and it’s worth will be magnified as we move closer to exhausting our already rapidly depleting natural resources. Harnessing the power of manure, and the earthworm, will empower communities to feed themselves, building soil fertility on our farms and within our gardens. Despite the zoo being the most obscure source of manure, growing even obscurer as we move into the planet’s sixth mass extinction with 60% loss of animal species since 1970, it provides a source of hope. Considering an elephant produces 40 tonnes of manure a year – double that of a dairy cow – their contribution alone to food security and soil fertility is undeniable.
For Anna’s full report from her research trip funded by the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust and the Royal Horticultural Society, please follow this link.