Cows trained to urinate on the ‘carpet’ in a study to reduce polluting gases | agricultural business

Just like dogs, Cows can also be taught to use the ‘carpet’. And in Germany, an experiment like this was made to try Reduce emissions of polluting gases.

The study, published Monday (13) in the scientific journal “Current biology”, showed that the emission of ammonia from animal urine can be reduced if livestock droppings are treated.

To try to persuade cows to urinate in a certain place, a group of researchers from the University of Auckland and the Federal Institute for Research in Animal Health in Germany used a technique often used by parents with their children: Offer candy as a reward.

The cows were placed in a special barn, a brown with a green sheath, called MooLoo, where, after urination, they received a sweet liquid consisting mainly of molasses. On the other hand, the animals that made the need outside the fence received puffs of cold water.

The experiment was conducted on 16 calves.

Cows are trained to urinate in a “potty” in a study to reduce polluting gases – Photo: Thomas Häntzschel / AFP

Because it contains nitrogen and urine when mixed with feces. turns into ammonia, that cause various environmental problems, such as acid rain, says Lindsey Matthews, an animal behaviorist at the University of Auckland, one of the research authors.

Ammonia can also be converted by soil microbes to nitrous oxide, the third most harmful greenhouse gas, after methane and carbon dioxide.

From this experience, the Scientists have estimated that capturing 80% of livestock urine in latrines can lead to a 56% reduction in ammonia emissions.

A single cow can produce about 30 liters of urine per dayMatthews told the Associated Press news agency. In 2019, nitrous oxide made up 7% of all US greenhouse gases, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Cattle also emit methane, through erotto.

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