TIL: Camels can eat long-needled cactus


Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/05/24/til-camels-can-eat-long-needl.html

What is your Band Name, Rapper Name, Album Name

I think camels are metal as fuck is my new favorite expression. Its relevance is sort of narrow, but I’ll find a way to make it work.


Anywho, the same sorts of papillae structures have independently evolved multiple times across the animal kingdom; notably inside the mouths and throats of…

Oh! I’ve seen porn of that!


Don’t jellyfish reproduce asexually? Can they ever be said to have truly died? Isn’t it all one jelly fish, going back to the dawn of time, imortally dying, awaiting the day when their ancient masters return and call forth the shoggoths once more?


Another surprise for me was learning that goats can eat poison ivy with impunity, and seem to find it delicious. An old friend of mine watches over a small river island, and keeps a couple of goats on it specifically to clear out the poison ivy.


So you can pass the eye of a needle through a camel, huh?


With an armored tongue, no wonder they can spit so well!


And they look like this:


It’s interesting how well African animals deal with new world cactus. Our Sulcata tortoise cheerfully munches prickly pear cactus pads that I’m afraid to touch.


Good question. I think the philosophical debate really revolves around mitosis, where each “daughter” is 50% of the “mother”, but jellyfish bud, so it’s a little more obvious what the original animal is.


I’m not surprised that camels can eat North American cactus. The earliest known camel lived in North America 40-50 mya, and there was a species living in western North America that went extinct soon after arrival of humans.


It is really that they are adapted to eat “thorny plants”, and new world cacti are superficially similar enough that they have no problem. Just like South/Central American Cane Toads weren’t adapted to eat a measurable chunk of Austrailian biodiversity, they still make a good go of it.

Man, I was ready to go full on plant biologist on the post for the following statement

“Their mouths are adapted to eat whole pieces of prickly pear cactus”

But then blurb from TFA covered it better than I ever could. Good jorb.


Deer too will eat poison ivy.


A kid’ll eat ivy too, would’n yooooo?


/me shudders

I’ve had poison ivy really bad a few times in my life. I now wash thoroughly after tromping around in the woods, every time. You gotta, even if there’s no symptoms; my problem always was that it takes almost a week for me to develop symptoms, and by then it’s everywhere. EVERYWHERE.



It’s amazing how much stuff humans touch without thinking about it. I’ve had a few memorable lessons on the subject from scotch bonnet peppers.

Later, when I started working with dangerous chemicals, I found that an awareness of what I had already done with my hands and what I intended to do with them next, had been burned into my brain.


Even chopping garden-variety jalapeños can give you good lessons about that - especially in wintertime with chapped hands. I don’t want to even think about working with scotch bonnets or ghost peppers or Carolina Reapers.

From an eating standpoint, habaneros are the hottest peppers I can stand.


Camels will also fuck your shit up, especially when you’re interfering with them doing maths in their heads.


I need an attack camel!


Especially don’t ever stick your finger in your eye or up your nose after chopping peppers!


Giant hogweed is a nasty invader here, especially once it starts spreading creep.

“Stay away from it,” he said. “The sap of the giant hogweed plant is photoreactive, so it does react with the sunlight. It can cause an intense burn right away or an intense blistering. Also, if you get it in your eyes, it can cause blindness temporarily or permanent.”

If your skin comes in contact with the weed, the City of Guelph recommends washing any affected areas immediately with soap and water.

Authorities also advise keeping any affected areas of skin out of direct sunlight and seeking medical advice as soon as possible.