Potatoes were first tamed in the South American Andes as far back as 10,000 years ago. The Spanish tourists brought them to Europe during the early 16th century.
Hence they are currently the largest crop in the U.S., with the average person eating 55 pounds of potatoes annually. They are significantly the staple food in different countries around the globe because they are simple to grow, highly nutritious, and low in carbohydrates.
Nevertheless, they have fiber, phytochemicals, and minerals that help to prevent disease and promote wellbeing. Humans are not the only potato-loving creatures, but animals also eat them.
What animals eat potatoes? You need to know that these animals eat vegetable tubers and disturb the surrounding vegetation.
Which Animals Eat Potatoes?
1. Wild boars
Wild boars are one of the animals that eat potatoes. These animals are covered with brown fur and weigh about 300 pounds. They were imported from Europe to North America in the 16th century as a source of animal protein for Spanish explorers.
In the 20th century, people brought more wild boars to North America for the sport function. They have become potato eating animals like humans and native animals. Also, they can eat corn, small animals, and acorns.
2. Field mice
They are small rodents that eat apples, corn, potatoes and almost any type of food they find. Because they have an exceptionally strong digestive system, they can eat spoiled food that infects humans and many other creatures.
They eat potatoes because of their nutritional value and how they taste. These mice have many predators that bear, snakes, owls and cats. Field mice can multiply very fast. They take three weeks for the mice to mature and give birth to babies every month.
Raccoons are also another animals that eat potatoes. They are slightly larger than cats and have a grey coat and black and white marks.
Their mask-like faces and striped tails give them an exceptionally distinctive look. Because raccoons are night-time animals, you will never see them in the garden during the day. Like wild boars and mice, many consider them pests.
Raccoons often sneak in the garden and eat potatoes. People use a variety of strategies to keep raccoons away from their backyards, including pinwheels and streamers to scare them away or place a radio close to the yard.
4. White-tailed deer
These animals can jump nine feet and run about 40 miles per hour. The diet for white-tailed deer varies greatly depending on the foodstuff available in the year. Potatoes, acorns and nuts are preferred by deer, even if these food materials may be inadequate during winter.
Deer also like to eat wildflowers, grass, apples, and other types of fruits. They are known for eating potatoes, beans, wheat and other cultivated foods. In winter, deer have less food and can eat leaves and twigs with low nutritional value.
Voles love to eat potatoes. You will find remaining tubers with some marks and some potatoes missing when they eat. Moles can stay in the colonies of hundreds, which means they can cause significant damage to the potato field, but they are hard to catch.
Rabbits can consume your entire yard full of potatoes if you allow them. Even if you scare them, you will find them in your yard the following day. It is always best to use organic repellents to repel them.
This is because chemical products can threaten the lives of children, pets, or other wildlife you don’t want to hurt. Organic rabbit repellents function just like chemical ones. Many rabbit repellents are granular or spray substances that smell or taste unpleasant to the rabbit.
Pigs can consume potatoes, but it is essential to ensure they are fried or cooked. Otherwise, they can cause stomach upset. Each potato is supposed to be suitable for their consumption.
If well cooked, potatoes can be an excellent energy source for your pigs. In addition, potatoes are the most accepted products because of their nutritional value or cost savings to breeders or farmers. The advantage is the high energy value and starch level.
The Benefits Of Potatoes
- Bone health
Potatoes are rich in iron, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, and magnesium to maintain the body and build bone strength and structure. Zinc and iron play an essential role in the maturation and production of collagen.
Calcium and phosphorus are essential for bone structure, but balancing these two minerals is essential for good bone mineralization. Excess phosphorus and less calcium contribute to osteoporosis and bone loss.
- Heart health
Potato fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, and potassium content contribute to heart health. Potatoes have significant levels of fiber that assist in lowering total blood cholesterol, hence reducing heart disease risk.
Higher potassium intake and lower sodium intake reduce the risk of all-cause heart disease and mortality.
Choline is a versatile and important nutrient found in potatoes. They help in muscle movement, learning, memory and mood assistance. Also, they help to maintain the composition of cell membranes, transmit nerve impulses, fat absorption, and early brain development.
Potatoes are an excellent vitamin B6 source. This plays an important role in the metabolism of energy through breaking down proteins and carbohydrates into amino acids and glucose. These tiny compounds are easily used for energy inside the body.
- Skin support system
Potatoes are important because they ensure skin support systems. Typically, vitamin C in these tubers acts as an antioxidant and prevents damage from the sun, smoke and pollution. Also, vitamin C improves the overall texture of the skin and assists to smoothen out wrinkles.
Studies have shown that vitamin C can help to reduce the duration and severity of the cold. Potatoes become the best resource of vitamin C.
The potatoes come from South America in Andes Mountain, where mountain people have grown for thousands of decades. Getting plenty of potatoes may reduce the danger of various lifestyle-related health problems and benefit your health.
Even when cooked, potatoes have essential nutrients that benefit human health. Voles, raccoons and mice are some creatures that can eat potatoes. These creatures, on the other hand, eat roots and ground vegetables.