Tag Archives: protein

Can’t Eliminate an Invasive Species? Try Eating It. – NYTimes.com

Can’t Eliminate an Invasive Species? Try Eating It. – NYTimes.com.

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Pigeon Milk, the wonder food

10 day old squab on a building ledge in New York City - image by Cutiepie Company

Lucky chubby squab. Fed the wonder food of Pigeon milk, they can double their size in 48 hours. In the book Pigeon, Barbara Allen also reports that, “Pigeon milk fuels what is one of the most explosive growth rates of almost any creature on earth”.  I’d like my next protein shake to be made of pigeon milk.

How to milk them? Fortunately, both the parent pigeons secrete the milk from their crops, which is located where the breast is. No nipples though, they use their throats like straws in reverse and their beaks serve as the delivery point into the mouths of their squab. So, I’m imagining a mechanical squab head bobbing around in the nest which is designed to accept the milk from the parent. This does sound ridiculous at first, but robotic cow milking machines are doing the same thing: mechanically milking an animal so humans can enjoy the nutritious results. Do check out this video of a robot milker in action on YouTube.  Pigeon milk might take longer to get, but it has more protein and fat than cow or human milk, so perhaps it would be worthwhile? [I can’t help but think of that recent, viral story about breast milk ice cream]. Thinking through the oddities of milking animals is enough to cause me to ask for almond milk in my next protein shake.

Breast milk ice cream on sale at a London ice cream parlour. Photograph: Graham Turner for the Guardian

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Filed under Biology, Food, Public Perception