Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Google solves mystery of little brown turds

I was disturbed, extremely disturbed. Moving to a new country can be a disorienting process at the best of times.

It is made no easier when you wake up each morning to find a smattering of small brown turds littered across the white floor tiles.

As I removed the mysterious defecatory material every day, I was tortured by the knowledge that I would have to face the same unpleasant task in 24 hours time.

What worried me more was the vexed question of which heinous creature was using my apartment as a public toilet.

Living on the 23rd floor of a reasonably modern Jakarta apartment block, I presumed that I would be spared the harassment of mice or rats.

And, in any case, the said turds looked too small to have been produced by a rodent.

I had seen a few geckos skulking around the flat at night but, despite many previous encounters with these inoffensive reptiles, had never knowingly come into contact with their shit.

In the pre-internet era, if I’d wanted to find out the identity of my tormentor, I would probably have had to bag up the beast’s stool and send a sample to the Natural History Museum in London for analysis.

Thanks to Google, I merely typed the words “gecko” and “shit” into my web browser and, eureka, I had found my culprit.

During my feculent journey of discovery, I also discovered that gecko’s get rid of their urine in solid form, little white spots attached to their little brown turds. Apparently it’s the reptilian equivalent of passing a kidney stone every time you piss – sounds painful.

Fascinating as all this information is, it doesn’t really help me solve my main dilemma.

I could try to get rid of the geckos with bug spray but they perform a useful role by eating mosquitoes and other pesky insects. And with the seasonal dengue fever peak coming up next month in Jakarta, having a few allies in the fight against the mozzies can’t be a bad thing.

Now to find a gecko poop-a-scoop on eBay....

1 comment:

  1. I sometimes see small geckos on my balcony (in Bangkok), but I like them. They're too scared of humans to ever come near you and they eat mosquitos and other bugs :)