Elephant Dung Pumpkins
Last year, during our Pumpkin Fest, the African Elephants at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm ate lots of pumpkins, squash and other vegetables. The seeds from these vegetables pass right through their digestive system until they end up in the Elephant's poo!
Fast forward a year, and you can find Noah’s Ark decorated with over 100 huge pumpkins. These very pumpkins have been foraged for in a huge pile of elephant dung.
Elephants can poo up to 150kg per day. This vast amount of waste is collected and forms a large compost pile that is used as fertiliser for our crops.
Over the course of the past year, the fertile elephant dung gave the seeds all the nutrients they needed to grow into these fantastic pumpkins and squashes!
Last week, three members of staff got stuck in and pulled 100 squash plants out of the dung, ready for them to be cleaned and for our Park Rangers to decorate the zoo with them.
According to a new study, this method of seed dispersal may be the answer to regrowing the rainforests. With Brazilian Tapirs, munching on plants in the rainforests and then depositing little poo packets full of seeds around for regrowth, some believe this is a good start for fixing the damage to rainforests.
Over 100 vegetables were grown on our Elephant Dung Pile at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm this year. Come and see our Elephant Poo Pumpkin Patch throughout Pumpkin Fest until the 2nd November.