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Indigo Collings

Aardvarks taste of formic acid?

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In my 1925 version of the Chambers's Encyclopaedia, regarding the Aardvark, it says that "The flesh is edible, but from it's food is apt to taste of formic acid."

I can't find any information on the taste of Aardvark meat, could anyone confirm or disprove this claim? As you can imagine, the encyclopaedia does contain a lot of false/obsolete information, so I'm somewhat sceptical.

Apologies if this is wrong place to be posting this.

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48 minutes ago, Indigo Collings said:

In my 1925 version of the Chambers's Encyclopaedia, regarding the Aardvark, it says that "The flesh is edible, but from it's food is apt to taste of formic acid."

I can't find any information on the taste of Aardvark meat, could anyone confirm or disprove this claim? As you can imagine, the encyclopaedia does contain a lot of false/obsolete information, so I'm somewhat sceptical.

Apologies if this is wrong place to be posting this.

Very interesting, this is my first time hearing of it. Likely the first place to look would be its diet, and the diet of its diet. Aardvarks, as far as I know, haven't been widely observed to eat anything other than ants and termites. The key to answering your question could be in the organic chemistry of the environment upon which the ants and termites feed. 

Edited by Anchovyforestbane

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54 minutes ago, Indigo Collings said:

I can't find any information on the taste of Aardvark meat

From "Biology of the Aardvark" available on https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/52/Aardvark.pdf page 67:

Quote

In many areas the aardvark formerly was and sometimes still is hunted by the native inhabitants (also cf. chapter 10.1). Many reported of that and Carr23 even states they would taste of pork. Eating aardvarks has a long tradition.

The paper has plenty of references that may give further information. See for instance appendix A, page 164 for the source regarding taste (Carr23).

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I suspect the authors may have assumed that because of their diet, but the acid is unlikely to accumulate in muscle. In ant eaters they remain in the stomach where they help digesting their prey, for example.

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Planning for Thanksgiving? I think you might be better to just stick with turkey...(or is this your way of keeping the guests numbers under 10 with the pandemic, while feeling obligated to invite all the in-laws?)

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Unfortunately I feel that even that limit may be too high, especially when folks travel from outside a given bubble. In Canada part of the current surge is likely due to thanksgiving gatherings. Considering that the US is already in worse shape, it could be rather catastrophic.

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