Should Minnesota Rancher’s Paint Their Cows Like Zebras to Stop Bug Bites?
One of the hardest things in life is when you have two passions and don't know which one you want to follow. I love being a radio DJ, but I also love ranching. The day I find a way to do both, I'll be the happiest girl ever. This is going to make me sound crazy, but in my free time I research cows and I stumbled across this article the other day. I found it to be so interesting I thought I would share it with you.
According to CNN, Japanese researchers painted a few cows to look like zebras to see if the white stripes would stop bug bites. Like every study, they did have a control that wasn't painted to do a comparison. The article says that bug bites have extream financial cost for the cattle industry... we are talking around billions of dollars in losses each year. This normally comes from cows getting sick from the bites. Most times it cheaper to take the loss on the cow than to treat the bites. So finding a way to prevent bug bites could do big things for the farming industry.
This study found that the cows that were painted like zebras received 50% fewer bug bites than those who's coats were left along. Researchers think that the white distracted the fly's eyes, so they wouldn't bite the cow. This study only looked at a small sample and didn't include the Holstein (black and white dairy cows). The researches say that they need to do a little more investigating, but think they have found a solution.
So... Do you think Minnesota ranchers should paint their cows to look like zebras? It would take a lot of time and money to paint your cow, but in the long run, imagine the money you would save! Personally, I think some more research should be done before we all jump on the Zebra-Cow bandwagon!
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