Bird-Poop-AQUILA-Magazine-Awesome-Activities

E . B .’ s Mission
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AQUiLA MAGAZINE
MONEY MATHS

Become a guano gazillionaire ( not really !)

Did you enjoy learning about bird poop islands in the Money Maths issue of AQUILA magazine ? Then this is the task for you !

E . B .’ s Mission

Did you know that according to US law , any uninhabited and unclaimed island covered with seabird poop can be claimed for the nation ? This old law helped the country acquire guano ( seabird poop fertiliser ) for farming and it ’ s still in operation ! OK , sure , there aren ’ t many islands in the world that haven ’ t already been claimed by a nation state , but the world is always changing . Underwater volcanoes can create new islands .
ACTIVITY SKILLS 1-2 Hours
Let ’ s imagine that you are the first person to find one of these unclaimed and uninhabited islands and it happens to be covered in poop . Your mission is to work out how to claim it , how to create a community , and how to start a sustainable guano industry !
DIFFICULTY
The thing about becoming a gazillionaire is that it usually means other people or ecosystems lose out , and that ’ s not really our vibe . The world ’ s smallest island nation is Nauru – a small coral island in the south-west Pacific Ocean . 12,808 people live there , but phosphate mining has left the island ’ s interior in a sorry state . Your guano mining operation must avoid causing similar damage .

GET STARTED

STEP 1 :
Let ’ s begin by drawing our island and naming it . What is your island called ? What are the people who will live on the island going to be called ?
STEP 2 :
YOU WILL NEED o Debate partner ( optional ) o Pen o Paper
Create a system of government for your island . How are decisions going to be made ?
Do you have one hereditary ruler with absolute power , or elected representatives and a nominated president ? How about outright anarchy ? Choose carefully .
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