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Nature & Environment

Penguins can fire their own droppings over 4ft

By T.K. Randall
July 8, 2020 · Comment icon 17 comments

Just don't stand too close... Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Joe Mabel
If there's one place you don't want to stand, it's within around 4ft of the back of a Humboldt penguin.
In what is surely one of the strangest studies we've seen in some time, scientists in Japan decided to investigate the explosive 'rectal power' of the penguins kept at Katsurahama aquarium.

Despite their cute and unassuming appearance, Humboldt penguins possess a surprisingly high level of pressure in their posteriors, enabling them to fire their excrement over a relatively long distance.

According to the study, the penguins can fire their droppings over 4ft at speeds of over 4.5mph - which is the equivalent of a human defecating over a distance of 10ft from a standing position.
In the wild, penguins tend to nest on raised rocks, enabling them to defecate even longer distances.

So great is the potential of this hidden 'superpower' that zookeepers have been advised to keep a substantial distance from the back of the birds in order to avoid any unfortunate surprises.

"We found that penguin keepers should keep a distance of longer than 1.34 metres [4.4 feet] from penguins trying to eject faeces in the Katsurahama aquarium," the researchers wrote.

Suffice to say, if you ever encounter a penguin yourself, try not to stand directly behind it.

Source: Ars Technica | Comments (17)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #8 Posted by South Alabam 4 years ago
They make a weapon out of their "Bio."
Comment icon #9 Posted by papageorge1 4 years ago
I just wouldn't believe this without evidence. I brought the Papameter 2.0 within four feet to get a reading. IT'S TRUE!! Damn bird.... Confidence Level: PROVED
Comment icon #10 Posted by and then 4 years ago
Two things... First, I could have gone the rest of my life in ignorance of this little gem...Second, I'll never look at a penguin the same again..not EVER    
Comment icon #11 Posted by Kittens Are Jerks 4 years ago
You might want to consider keeping a few. You know, as back up should you ever lose your 2nd Amendment rights. 
Comment icon #12 Posted by 'Walt' E. Kurtz 4 years ago
They will be perfect in these Corona times to keep people at distance just Imagine Rolling down the street with your new gang of humbolt penguins. 
Comment icon #13 Posted by jethrofloyd 4 years ago
Poor Jim, sure it wasn't easy for him to made this movie. 
Comment icon #14 Posted by acute 4 years ago
Mr. Pooper's Penguins?!? 
Comment icon #15 Posted by Captain Risky 4 years ago
Go to post 12. LOL
Comment icon #16 Posted by XenoFish 4 years ago
Comment icon #17 Posted by Jon the frog 4 years ago
Bob is angry to have lost to such a puny bird !      

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