Bat Poop in My Mascara!
Bat feces, or Guano as it is called by some, or bat poop as it is called by others, is not used in mascara. Somewhere along the line, the word guano and guanine got confused. (Thanks Billy) And I am here to tell you that mascara has no guano in it. Quanine is derived actually from refined fish scales. It adds a glimmer or sheen to the mascara. The FDA has approved the ingrediant and it has been deemed harmless to us. It apears that it is more dangerous to keep a bottle of opened mascara longer than 3 months, or using someone elses mascara, or adding water to a dry mascara bottle. The threat of using a contaminated bottle of mascara causes the opportunity for bacteria and infections in the eye. Back in the old days, the nitrogen rich droppings of a bat were scooped up and refined into explosives. Mountain men used it to make black powder to load there muskets while exploring the untamed wilderness.
In 1865 the Spanish fought the governments of Chili and Peru, and of corse the United States had to get in there too, over quano. Fear of guano shortages led the U.S. into its first swing at global colonialism. We passed the guano islands act in 1856 which still does apply. This allows a U.S. citizen to claim an unclaimed Island for the United States if the island contains guano. Over 50 islands were claimed under this act (
48 U.S.C. § 1411-1419) and still remain under U.S. Control, one of the most famous is Midway Island, made famous by the battle for Midway during WWII.Now about the only use for bat guano in the civilized world is as an organic fertilizer. Any plants needing a nitrogen rich environment will find it with bat guano in the soil. I know my beans and tomatoes love it!
There are dangers asociated with guano though. Having bats in our homes attic or walls can cause respritory and pulmanary issues. Histoplasmosis is an airborne illness caused by the spores of a fungi. It can look like the flu or when it is severe, it can be mistaken for tuberculosis. Many infections in people do not produce any symptoms or problems at all. The skin or blood tests sometime produce positive results, but may be indication of exposure rather than infection.