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We gut a feeling this journey into animal digestive tracts won't disgust you!
(Most) monkeys can digest insects – can you?
Mareike Janiak (Postdoctoral Scholar, Dept. of Anthropology & Archaeology, University of Calgary)
Many primates love eating insects - but insects don’t love being eaten. Finding and catching them is hard but it’s only part of the problem. A large part of what is involved in nutrition happens once the food has been swallowed and has to be digested. Which isn’t always easy, especially when your food is protected by a tough exoskeleton. So, what’s a monkey to do? Learn how primates digest insects and whether you can too!
Gut fermentation and the evolution of large mammals
Mammals can’t digest cellulose, so most herbivores have evolved gut fermentation, but not all gut fermentation is equal. The type of gut fermentation has affected the kinds of plants herbivores can eat and the body size they can reach. I’ll review the history of climate and vegetation change over the past 35 million years and how these affected the evolution of hoofed mammals.