Dust Bunnies Wanted

This is the first appearance of Dust Bunny on our YouTube channel.

Enjoy this short bunny rock and can you remember the artist and track name?


How to clean space

What do you do if you see a spaceman? Fill it up man! What do you do if you fill all that space with junk? Clean it up man! But how and by whom?

Branson and Bezos seek to offer us the chance to visit space, travel in space and perhaps one day, live in space. Cox, the British physicist, appeared on television recently announcing with giddy excitement, although he gets giddy at a mere mention of a quark, that he seemed to think the reality of space travel and habitation might be within his own lifetime.

Lets take a leap forward to 2050 and imagine the first space tourists peeling overflowing Virgin X sick bags from their chins. As they wipe the last string of gravity-free floating vomit from their eyelashes they turn their attentions to the observation windows.

Eyes wide with anticipation, also from the sting of stomach acid burning their corneas, they gaze at the spectacular wonder of, well, it would have been Earth but unfortunately the mountain of space junk left from almost 100 years of neglectful space exploration has left the view rather masked by an asteroid field of human tech waste.

No five star review on Trip Adviser. Reminds me of Karl Pilkington's words as he stood in the shadow of the great pyramids in awestruck wonder at the tornado of diapers whizzing around his head.

The question then remains, who is responsible for the cleaning operation for space and who will pay for it? The Highland Cleaning Company from Scottsdale would be delighted to bid on this contract as I work for the company and get very giddy at quarks, so would be keen to get my space gloves on and begin cleaning. The reality though is it will take a monumental effort and some outside the atmosphere box thinking to recover the waste and move it on to another location, no doubt to become another generations or even alien race's problem in 100 years.

The European Space Agency proposal for waste collection ranges from a giant net, a robotic arm or some tentacles to capture the mechanical waste now orbiting our planet. All rather clumsy I feel. Typical Europeans.

The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency ups the physics ante with an electrodynamic tether whose current would slow down the speed of satellites making them fall closer to death in Earths atmosphere. This solves the problem for future aliens races on where to put the human ZX spectrum waste.

A quirky project named SpaDE, Space Debris Elimination, has a rather odd and whimsical nature to its science by essentially puffing large plumes of air from within the atmosphere to disturb the debris and slow its path causing it to burn up on its decent to Earth.

There are many other proposals out there and the information and accuracy of figures and stats changes month by month so then it begs the question: how much 'stuff' is actually out there?

How big is the problem and should we really be spending our tax dollars or private funds on such a clean up?

One million. There are approximately 1,000,000 pieces of loose fragments orbiting our planet that originated from rocket explosions, launch canisters, collisions and add in a splattering of dust and flakes of paint for extra measure.

There is natural tendency due to gravity for some of this space junk to find its way into Earth's atmosphere and burn up harmlessly but the ratio of whats burning up to what we pump up there is not in our clean green space favor.

What can we do?

I would like to see an international school competition engage the minds of our youngsters to design and dream of possible answers. Not only will it highlight the need to complete such a task to our children but I think they might just invent a space dumpster truck that recycles the junk into rocket colored painted bicycles.

What have we learned today?

1. There are 1,000,000 pieces of junk floating around our planet.
2. The ESA are planning a robotic arm to pick it all up.
3. Karl Pilkington's pyramid report still makes me laugh.

What ever we do, we need to do something. We have polluted our planet. We've changed our oceans, the air we breathe, tampered with our food sources, caused climate change and ravaged ecosystems. We have hurt Mother Earth and now we are slowly hurting her home, space. What ever we do, we should choose to do something, no matter how little, just try and do something.

How to Clean a Scottsdale Hedgehog

Scottsdale is not the ideal home for any outdoor adventuring hedgehog. The temperature outside would kill them. The snakes would eat them. The inability for a saguaro cactus to form an adequate hedge would make them homeless. The conditions can therefore be described as somewhat hostile.

They are not indigenous to Arizona but from 2015 they became legal pets for you or I to own and enjoy provided they are kept indoors, kept warm but not too hot, cool but not too cold (too cool might encourage them to hibernate).

There does not appear to be any scientific classification for a Scottsdale hedgehog.

Most common is the African pygmy hedgehog.

The Scottish hedgehog, also known as a European hedgehog, is somewhat tougher than the Scottsdale version and to produce a comparative list of what might harm them appears to be excessively mean but I feel its my duty in order to protect them. The cuteness of these bonny wee chaps is quite evidently clear but an innocuous treat of chocolate could lead to a watery brown trail as these creatures are lactose intolerant.

Grapes kill pets. Many pet owners will know that grapes are toxic and can be potentially fatal and the same goes for the poor wee hedgehog. The native hedgehog to Scotland has less reason to fear such a viscous attack from fruit because as a nation we prefer deep-fried Mars Bars to fruit so our indoor environment is considerably safer.

The imported house-bound Scottsdale hedgehog has every right to fear a grape as it could easily be found in its food chain within the home and I haven't even mentioned raisins, seeds or tea tree oil yet as these are all potential pitfalls to death for the unwary hedgehog not streetwise and too domesticated.

If you actually manage to actually keep a lactose intolerant, temperature sensitive, hibernating, diet wary, salmonella bacteria harboring hedgehog awake or alive, you may wish to wash it. Oh yeah, the CDC recommend you wash your hands before and after handling a hedgehog as they can carry salmonella bacteria.



How to clean a hedgehog.

The recommended paraphernalia for bathing a hedgehog is quite simply a mild shampoo, a soft towel, and brush (preferably not your sibling or partners as cross contamination could harm either party here) and a baby bath or sink of lukewarm water.

You may be thinking at this point can a hedgehog swim?

The answer is a rather impressive yes. I must say I was surprised to learn this but then I felt I should have given these guy's a better chance. I suggest you don't assume yours is a fully fledged Arena Swim Series hopeful and fling the spiky cutey straight into the deep end of the bath just in case he was the runt of the litter and needed swim aids, googles, flippers and a guide pole.

Gently lower you pet into the tranquil pool and let him soak up some moisture and enjoy the moment. Be careful not to knock over your glass of wine or burn your elbow on a candle as you brush his quills and dab his body with the soft washcloth or towel. If a hedgehog could speak at this point he would encourage you to avoid water in his ears, they mostly detest water in their ears.

If you should take your eye off the wee fella for split second please be aware that these little creatures can run up to 6mph and can even climb. Keep your wits about you, cute but adventurous little hedgehogs can get into all kinds of scrapes. Note here: some mobility scooters operate at a speed of 4mph, therefore all drivers should be aware of 'speeding' hedgehogs and use mirrors when making sudden direction changes.

Drying the hedgehog afterwards is important and ensuring all shampoo is rinsed off his quills equally so. A warm second towel is advisable to snuggle into and then sit back, watch some David Attenbourgh and enjoy bonding with your fresh and clean hedgehog.

Do this at least twice a year but more often would be encouraged if a swimming scholarship looks to be an option or ambition.


So what did we learn today?

  1. Hedgehogs are legal pets in Arizona but would not last too long in the wild. They are fussy eaters and if allowed to cool off will hibernate.
  2. Hedgehogs can swim. They also run at an impressive 6mph which is faster than a 3 wheeled mobility scooter with a top speed of 4mph.
  3. Hedgehogs are susceptible to pneumonia so wrap up warm after a bath but don't feed them chocolate as this will make an undesirable mess on a clean white towel.

Although this article does not cover all the intricate details required for cleaning a hedgehog I feel there is basis enough here to allow you to further investigate, read more authoritative resources for cleaning your hedgehog and take care of these impressive and cute little mammals. To be fair, cleaning the little ball of needles is the least of your concerns, keeping it alive is much trickier.