The 90% decrease in the Asian elephant population over the past century has more of an effect than most realize. Here are a few reasons as to why elephant dung is just as important as the creature itself.
With fewer than 50,000 elephants left, the seed dispersion the elephants generally create due to their vast consumption of fruits will decline drastically. Elephants carry the seeds of the fruits in their digestive system for up to 20 kilometres, allowing for the growth of certain vegetation to flourish in different areas. Due to the decline of the species, and because other animals are unable to carry seeds for that distance, this is a serious problem.
As a natural, non-polluting byproduct, lighting a dried out piece or two of elephant dung is an effective way of repelling pesky mosquitos. Now, don’t go rubbing it all over your skin to better the effects, for it’s the smoke itself that deters the mosquitoes from getting too close.
Eco-Friendly Paper Source
Because elephants are herbivores, their dung is filled with natural fibres holding it together. Companies like Aliya Dung Paper use the fibres extracted from the elephant poop and mix it with recycled paper to create pulp. Following the traditional process of papermaking, the result is an acid-free, chlorine free, 100% recyclable paper product. A portion of all Aliya Dung Paper sales is donated to Millennium Elephant Foundation (MEF), where our founder volunteered to work with elephants before Aliya Dung Paper was born. MEF works to provide a better, higher quality of life for elephants.
When you’re left without food or water, helplessly lost in the woods of Africa or Asia, wherever elephants may be habituating, elephant dung may be your only way of surviving. Because there are very little bacteria in their waste, squeezing a fresh piece of poop can provide the hydration you need to last another day or two, until help arrives.
With a heavily fruit-based diet, elephant poo holds many traditional healing properties. The smoke that results from lighting it on fire can dull headaches, toothaches, limit other pain, clear sinuses and cure bloody noses. Just inhale and you’re good to go, just remember to put out the fire first before bringing it close to your face.
With the surge in popularity regarding coffee beans that have passed through the bowels of civet cats, who’s to say we can’t do the same thing with elephants? Costing a whopping $500USD per pound, coffee beans that have gone through an elephant's digestive system is a luxury to be splurged on. On another note, dung beer is on the rise in Texas, following the same process before being fermented into beer.
Green Energy Source
Waste from herbivores can generate gas for stoves, heat and electricity due to the high levels of methane and carbon dioxide present. Because elephant’s poop so much, they’re perfect for the task of supplying gas for engines and fertilizing lawns with their waste.