Mercury (Hobart)

Toilet-trained cows a serious propositio­n

- Jim Collier Legana

POTTY trained cows? Who would believe it but yes it’s possible and, given

Tasmania has serious problems with a poorly regulated dairy industry and contaminat­ed waterways, maybe it should be considered. Cows produce up to 30 litres of urine a day which, when mixed with faeces becomes ammonia, and with reports alleging

“substantia­l effluent discharge into waterways from North-West dairy farms and reports of dead cattle in settlement ponds” maybe it all should be taken very seriously. Animal behavioura­l scientists in New Zealand (where they also have serious problems with contaminat­ed waterways) and Germany have proven cows, especially calves, can be trained to use a Mooloo, a practice which, if introduced on a big scale, could result in huge benefits for the environmen­t. Tasmanian dairy farmers, and the state government, should seriously and thoroughly investigat­e the potential of such a proposal.

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