Scientists have found out why the excrement of wombats has the shape of a cube. It turns out that this is important!
Categories: AnimalsBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/en/article/scientists-have-found-out-why-the-excrement-of-wombats-has-the-shape-of-a-cube-it-turns-out-that-this-is-important
Modern scientists are making amazing discoveries, explaining things that people have been puzzling over for centuries. Sometimes the results of the researchers' work are very strange, but they always find a way to justify the efforts and finances spent by coming up with ways to apply them. It would seem, what's the use of the fact that the Australian marsupial animal wombat poops cubes? But if you look into it…
It has long been known that wombats are the most intelligent marsupial mammals and they don't do anything just like that in this life. Therefore, the amazing ability of animals to produce feces in the form of cubes has occupied scientists since the discovery of the Green Continent.
Cubic faeces are not just a whim of evolution. With this ingenious method, wombats force their feces to stay on the hillsides and not roll down. Why do they need it? It's simple – in the world of wombats, adults mark their territory in this way.
The wombat's poop really has the shape of cubes with precisely adjusted faces of 2 centimeters. What hypotheses have not been put forward about the causes of this phenomenon. Some claimed that the animal has an abnormal square anus, others assured that the wombats themselves shape the feces with their paws, but all these versions crumbled to dust.
Shamelessly looking at the asses of living and dead animals, biologists were able to make sure that nothing unusual is noted in this part of the wombat, and its anus looks quite traditional. The second blow was that neither in nature nor in captivity, these mammals did not show coprosculpture abilities, and even more so were not seen near their piles with measuring instruments.
A breakthrough in this field was made by American physicists from the Georgia Institute of Technology. They picked up two animals hit by cars on the highway on the island of Tasmania and began to carefully study their internal structure. It turned out that the length of the intestines of an adult wombat reaches 11 meters, but even a meticulous and not too squeamish naturalist schoolboy could determine this.
But then it gets interesting. Animal feces move through the intestines in liquid form, but gradually acquire shape (and content), and by the time they leave the body, they are formed into the same cubes. To understand the principle of this transformation, American engineers filled the guts of dead wombats with small balloons and inflated them.
Considering the stretched intestine, scientists realized that cubes of fecal matter are formed due to local deformations of the intestine. Flat faces and corners are sculpted due to the alternation of hard and soft areas of the intestine. In addition, it was found that this process is not fast and while the poop is moving to the exit, they have time to harden. Therefore, they pass through the anus without damage, maintaining strict geometric proportions.
Well, what's the use of this fecal discovery to humanity? Americans claim that the technology used thoughtlessly by wombats can be used in the food industry to form square sausages and sausages. Manufacturers of building materials will not refuse it either, where currently rectangular structures are primitively, in the old way, cast in molds or made by pressing.
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