This video from the USA, Iowa State University Extension, is called David Schmidt: Foaming Manure Pits.
From Mother Jones in the USA:
Mysterious Poop Foam Causes Explosions on Hog Farms
—By Tom Philpott
Wed May. 15, 2013 3:00 AM PDT
When you hear about foam in the context of food, you might think of molecular gastronomy, the culinary innovations of the Spanish chef Ferran Adrià, who’s famous for dishes like apple caviar with banana foam.
But this post is about a much less appetizing kind of foam. You see, starting in about 2009, in the pits that capture manure under factory-scale hog farms, a gray, bubbly substance began appearing at the surface of the fecal soup. The problem is menacing: As manure breaks down, it emits toxic gases like hydrogen sulfide and flammable ones like methane, and trapping these noxious fumes under a layer of foam can lead to sudden, disastrous releases and even explosions. According to a 2012 report from the University of Minnesota, by September 2011, the foam had “caused about a half-dozen explosions in the upper Midwest…one explosion destroyed a barn on a farm in northern Iowa, killing 1,500 pigs and severely burning the worker involved.”
And the foam grows to a thickness of up to four feet—check out these images, from a University of Minnesota document published by the Iowa Pork Producers, showing a vile-looking substance seeping up from between the slats that form the floor of a hog barn. Those slats are designed to allow hog waste to drop down into the below-ground pits; it is alarming to see it bubbling back up in the form of a substance the consistency of beaten egg whites.
And here’s the catch: Scientists can’t explain the phenomenon.
Check out this amazing 2011 video presentation [top of the post] on the matter by University of Minnesota researcher David Schmidt. He opens by describing a 2009 explosion that lifted a hog barn a “couple of feet off the ground” and blew the farm operator himself 20 feet from the building. (Thankfully, he wasn’t injured, and there were no animals in it.) And check out the footage, starting about 3:19 in, of the foam itself, which must be seen to be believed. At one point , a shovel dips into the mire and scoops up as sample—which jiggles and pulsates, alive, apparently, with microbial activity. Schmidt also does a great job of explaining just how manure foam can cause explosions.
- The Latest in Job Safety Hazards: Poop Foam (lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com)
- New in Factory Farming: Exploding Poop Foam (newser.com)
- Latest Factory Farm Byproduct: Exploding Foamy Pigdoots (wonkette.com)
- Explosive Hog-Shit Foam (motherboard.vice.com)
- There’s a Mystery Foam on Some Hog Poop, and It Causes Explosions (geekosystem.com)
- U.S. Agriculture Secretary Responds to Hog Farm Protestors (5newsonline.com)
This video from Britain says about itself:
May 17, 2012
During 2004, two UK television documentaries were produced which investigated the past activities of the UK Government’s Biological Warfare facility at Porton Down, Wiltshire.
The programmes revealed that scientists from Porton Down had used the UK as a vast outdoor laboratory during the Cold War. From 1950 to 1975, Porton scientists had clandestinely sprayed massive amounts of live bacteria (Serratia marcescens, E. coli MRE162 and Bacillus subtilis) and several tons of chemical compounds (such as Zinc Cadmium sulphide) over large parts of the UK.
The first programme shows – how Royal Enfield workers in an underground factory at Westwood Quarry were repeatedly exposed to an opportunistic pathogen in the early 1950s; how members of the public travelling on a regular railway train on the Salisbury-Exeter line were sprayed with live bacteria by Porton scientists while travelling through a tunnel; how the city of Salisbury was ‘attacked’ during August of 1960 with large amounts of a cadmium compound: and how Porton sceintists conducted the large, and now infamous, series of experiments – known as the Lyme Bay Trials.
The latter experiments exposed millions of UK residents to massive aerosols of live bacteria (E.coli and Bacillus subtilis) during the years 1963-1975. The huge bacterial clouds were sprayed from an Admiralty ship – ETV ICEWHALE – and were carried onshore by the wind and sampled by Porton scientists up to 50 miles inland. Athough this research was meant to be of a defensive nature, the official Porton film of these experiments stated: “Whilst these trials were designed for specific research purposes, they demonstrated, in a striking way, the feasibility of small-scale biological warfare. An appreciable dose of viable bacteria was achieved over an area greater than 1,000 square miles, by the release of only 120 gallons of suspension”.
Rise in animal experiments at defence laboratory
Almost 10,000 experiments were conducted on animals, including monkeys and pigs, at the Porton Down military research base last year, it has been revealed.
By Telegraph reporters
3:35PM GMT 18 Dec 2012
The number of animal tests carried out at the top-secret facility in Wiltshire increased by 300 since 2010 and by more than 1,000 since 2009.
Currently 21 licensed animal procedures are under way at Porton Down Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL).
Most of these fall into the “substantial” severity category which may cause “significant or prolonged animal suffering”.
Six of the projects cover work funded directly by US defence agencies.
The details were disclosed in a series of written answers from junior defence minister Philip Dunne.
He was responding to parliamentary questions tabled by Liberal Democrat MP Mike Hancock, the member for Portsmouth South.
Mr Hancock said he was shocked by the statistics which, until now, were never made generally public.
Last month the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection highlighted “disturbing and cruel” experiments at Porton Down, said to include live pigs being blasted with explosives and forced to inhale mustard gas, monkeys being infected with anthrax and guinea pigs being killed with nerve agent.
Mr Dunne, the minister responsible for defence science and technology, listed the number of animal procedures undertaken at DSTL Porton Down over the last three years.
The figure has risen from 8,452 in 2009 to 9,582 in 2010 and 9,882 last year, he revealed.
The animals involved were pigs, rabbits, monkeys and rodents.
All scientific experiments on animals, including those at Porton Down, have to be licensed by the Home Office under the proviso that suffering is minimised as much as possible.
Procedures are graded according to the severity of harm or suffering they inflict.
Of the 21 “active” projects at Porton Down, four are “unclassified”, three are “mild”, six are “moderate” and eight are categorised as “substantial”, said Mr Dunne.
A moderate procedure may cause animals a “noticeable degree of pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm”, according to the Home Office definition. Substantial severity “may cause a major departure from the animal’s usual state of health or well-being with significant or prolonged animal suffering”.
Mr Hancock said: “I was shocked to learn that almost 10,000 animal experiments are taking place at Porton Down every year, including ones inflicting substantial levels of suffering.
“The details were not included in the annual statistics published by the Home Office and many people will be totally unaware that this suffering is occurring.
“It is important that the Ministry of Defence routinely gives more information on its use of animals so the public can be fully informed.”
BUAV chief executive Michelle Thew said: “It is alarming that almost 10,000 animal experiments for military purposes took place in 2011 and that many animals were subjected to the most extreme suffering categorised by the Government.
“Some of the animal research conducted at Porton Down was even funded by the US defence agencies.
“The BUAV is calling for an end to the use of animals, including monkeys and pigs in these gruesome experiments. We need to ensure the safety of soldiers and civilians but the answer does not lay in blowing up or exposing animals to lethal chemical warfare and nerve agents.”
A REPORT published by the Ministry of Defence admitted that some trials of chemical agents on human volunteers at Porton Down from the 1940s to the 1970s involved “serious departures” from ethical standards: here.
- Claims of cruel animal experiments (walesonline.co.uk)
- Pigs blown up, guinea pigs poisoned and marmosets given anthrax: Campaigners expose ‘cruel’ secret military experiments at Porton Down (ccs-rochford.co.uk)
- Britain: ‘Cruel’ Secret Military Experiments At Porton Down Exposed (infiniteunknown.net)
- UK & World News: Claims of cruel animal experiments (journallive.co.uk)
- National News: Claims of cruel animal experiments (coventrytelegraph.net)
- Military Experiments Blew Explosives at Pigs and Infected Monkeys With Anthrax, Group Alleges (medicaldaily.com)
- Pigs blown up, guinea pigs poisoned and marmosets given anthrax: Campaigners expose ‘cruel’ secret military experiments at Porton Down (dailymail.co.uk)
- Live pigs ‘blasted with explosives and monkeys infected with anthrax during cruel experiments’ (independent.co.uk)
This video is called Cute mangalitza piglets.
By Tony Patey in Britain:
Charities slam MoD’s surgery on shot pigs
Monday 19 November 2012
Animal welfare groups attacked the Ministry of Defence today after it defended shooting live pigs to train army surgeons.
The pigs are shot by marksmen at a Nato training facility in Jaegerspris, Denmark, to replicate battlefield wounds and are then operated on by military medical staff.
Formerly known as Operation Danish Bacon, the practice has been described by animal rights groups as “impossible to justify medically, ethically and educationally.”
An MoD spokeswoman said: “This training provides invaluable experience, exposing our surgical teams to the specific challenges posed by the injuries of modern armed conflict.”
The MoD said although the practice would not be illegal in Britain, approval would have to be obtained on a case-by-case basis from the Home Office.
The government of the day suspended British participation in the surgical training exercises in summer 1998 after they were brought to the attention of ministers.
But the courses were re-instated after it was determined there was “no equally effective alternative” and that it was “entirely appropriate and, indeed, necessary” for military surgeons to carry out training on animals.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals described the procedure as “invasive and deadly” and claimed it would be illegal in this country.
It called for life-like dolls that “breathe” and “bleed” to replace the use of live animals.
Associate director for Peta UK Mimi Bekhechi said: “The overwhelming majority of the UK’s Nato allies do not shoot, stab and dismember animals for their military training exercises.”
The RSPCA said it was “upsetting that pigs were shot for surgeon practice.
“Pigs are highly intelligent animals and many people will be very distressed to hear about this,” it said.
“It is yet another example where animals pay the price of man’s inhumanity to man.
“We implore the military to explore the viability of alternative methods, and where these are found lacking, to invest in their further development.”
From The Independent:
Eighteen pigs were used in the most recent tests earlier this month, the Mail on Sunday reported.
They had circles drawn on their underbellies before a three-man sniper team fired shots intended to damage organs but not kill, the paper said.
Surgeons then treated them as they would battle zone casualties, reportedly keeping the pigs alive for two hours before they were put down.
‘We’re going to damage a lot of pigs’ livers’: Horrific boast of battlefield doctors who shoot then operate on injured animals at Nato base: here.
- Facebook Orange for Animal-Cruelty-Awareness (spiritandanimal.wordpress.com)
- Five arrested over suspected cat hunts (guardian.co.uk)
- Your Guide to Deciphering Cruelty-Free Beauty (bellasugar.com)
- Arrests after wild animals ‘killed by hunting dogs’ (itv.com)
This video is called Cute mangalitza piglets.
Mangalitza pigs are a woolly domestic race from eastern Europe.
As their wool protects them, they are one of few animal species willing to eat stinging giant hogweed.
Now, Almere local authorities have brought in mangalitza pigs to eat the hogweed.
A video about that is here.
See also here.
- NATO accused of anti-animal cruelty (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)
- Dutch police confuse beaver with burglar (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)
- Favourite mushroom poll (dearkitty1.wordpress.com)
- Website Launched to Battle Bugs, Other Invasive Pests in Arkansas (arkansasmatters.com)
- Giant human-wounding plant invades Canada (infocult.typepad.com)
- Plants defend themselves against pests with a sophisticated chemical arsenal. Pests, however, continually evolve mechanisms to tolerate or metabolize particular chemical components. (familysurvivalprotocol.com)
- New endophyte deters insect pests from plant root (radionz.co.nz)