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Old 05-19-2011, 06:40 PM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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How is it rabbits crap little round pellets.

Do they roll the vegetation in balls when eating? Does the stomach or intestines ball it up. Do they have a magical butt? Why are rabbit pellets (smart pills) so spherical.
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Old 05-19-2011, 08:47 PM
CookingWithGas CookingWithGas is offline
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I was just wondering the same thing about my guinea pig, and also deer. Human waste tends to look more or less extruded, reflecting the shape of the large intestine. But these other animals shit little very regular-shaped pellets of one size or another.
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:22 PM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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You just know they do this, but never wonder how.
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:56 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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The pellets are formed in the large intestine. There's no great secret to it. The intestines of all animals move the mass along by a series of contraction waves in the gut walls. In the case of animals like rabbits and sheep a lot of water is extracted during the process and the mass becomes ever smaller. Because it is also very fibrous the contraction waves pinch the ever decreasing mass into pellets.

It's probably easier to visualise if you look at the diagram.

Humans don't do this because our food isn't particularly fibrous and we aren't very good at extracting water from faeces, so the mass remains semi-liquid.
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:02 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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As to why they are spherical, it's because the sphere is the default shape formed when you roll something along a tube. Animals like horses and sheep also produce round pellets, but because they get jammed together in the rectum before being released they become distorted. Rabbits release their pellets continuously as they pass down the tract, so they never become squashed and remain round.
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:27 PM
rhubarbarin rhubarbarin is offline
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Nitpick: in the morning, rabbits poop clusters of soft tiny round poop (cecotropes). Then they eat them. They they poop firm fibrous round poop the rest of the day. Rabbits are weird.

The Master speaks. In short, it has to do with the colon, the rectum, and the sphincter working in concert to produce neatly-formed feces. Not so much with the diet of the animal - most pellet poopers are high-fiber herbivores, but many high-fiber herbivores have unformed, soft, or even near-liquid poop.
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:30 PM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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Thanks.
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:42 PM
Tabby_Cat Tabby_Cat is offline
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My cat pretty much poops spheres too, they're just jammed up in a long string but you can clearly tell they're spheres jammed up into a string.

Come to think of it, you can tell human poop is made of little rounded pellets jammed up too. But damn if I'm going to google for pics.
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Old 05-19-2011, 11:18 PM
rhubarbarin rhubarbarin is offline
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My poop isn't pelleted and never has been. See the Bristol Stool Scale - there's lots of ways for us to poop.
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Old 05-19-2011, 11:50 PM
Blake Blake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tabby_Cat View Post
My cat pretty much poops spheres too, they're just jammed up in a long string but you can clearly tell they're spheres jammed up into a string.
But cat dung definitely isn't a long string of spheres. The carnivore gut doesn't work that way.
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Old 05-20-2011, 10:03 AM
Duckster Duckster is offline
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Originally Posted by rhubarbarin View Post
My poop isn't pelleted and never has been. See the Bristol Stool Scale - there's lots of ways for us to poop.
Never underestimate the power of the SDMB. You can find any kind of shit here.
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Old 05-20-2011, 10:10 AM
DCnDC DCnDC is offline
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You think that's strange, believe it or not wombat poop is square (or cubical, roughly, to be more exact).
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:12 AM
psychonaut psychonaut is offline
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I asked a similar question some time ago; here's the thread.
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:46 AM
Superfluous Parentheses Superfluous Parentheses is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
You think that's strange, believe it or not wombat poop is square (or cubical, roughly, to be more exact).
Best fact of the day.
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Old 05-20-2011, 01:10 PM
anson2995 anson2995 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harmonious Discord View Post
Do they have a magical butt?
Yes. Yes, they do.
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Old 05-20-2011, 05:19 PM
Harmonious Discord Harmonious Discord is offline
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Originally Posted by anson2995 View Post
Yes. Yes, they do.
Now I'm thinking of the Trix rabbit with a magical butt.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:37 PM
Smeghead Smeghead is offline
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Silly rabbit - shits are for kids!
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