A long time ago I took an ecology course at Auburn, and part of the lab invloved studying a pond near the campus. We collected insects and frogs and toads and snakes and snails and more, and catalogued the various plants growing in around the water.
To better understand how the various species were linked together, we sacrificed some of the amphibians and insects, and dissected out their stomachs to discover what their diet consisted of.
That was interesting...but now I am intersted in the ecology of Bessemer, and while I can't dissect out the stomachs of residents to determine their diets, I have come up with another way...analyze the litter that I pick up on the street on our corner.
I admit this is not a scientific study, and the evidence is only anecdotal. Also, this is not representative of the entire population, but rather just the ones who throw litter out of their cars.
The mainstay of the diet is Church's Chicken, followed closely by Krystal Hamburgers. Honey Buns, Now and Later, Fritos, Lays Classic Chips and Lays Sour Cream and Onion (one package inside the other, indicating they were consumed together, probably by two individuals), O-Ke-Doke cheese flavored popcorn, one Nature Valley Sweet and Salty Nut Granola Bar, Mike and Ike, and David Sunflower seeds make up the bulk of the diet. In addition a Burger King bag, with no indication of the original contents, was found.
Liquid intake, while in the past often indicated a preference for Church's and Burger King fountain drinks and cheap wines, now seems to be leaning more toward beer, as Bud, Bud Light and Bud Ice was represented. One generic lemon lime drink and a Dasani water were also consumed.
Marlboro, Newport and Black & Mild Cigars seem to be the tobacco of choice.
Now it gets interesting. At least one Bessemer driver feels inadequate, and is taking VIM-25 Herbal Supplement for Male Enhancement. I hope it worked for him, but there is no way to know if he was the same individual that left evidence of safer sex practices, as a wrapper for a "wrapper" was found as well.
Now why this was thrown out of a moving vehicle I can't understand. Hopefully the driver was not the one putting on protection while travelling down the street, but maybe that would explain the people who run the red light or those who can not drive in a straight line down a straight street, and it gives a whole new meaning to the term "car-jacking."
At least one person did not use protection, however, as a Huggies package was also found. Thankfully the dirty diaper related to that package was not in sight.
My conclusions from this study are that Bessemer litterbugs do not consume a particularly healthy diet (one granola bar and one water bottle is hardly evidence of healthy living) and that they drive while drinking (and possibly while mating). Were the cigarettes smoked afterward?
One can only guess.
I can also report that there is no evidence to support placing the Bessemer litterbug on the protected species list. On the contrary, this species has been determined to a pest, and efforts to eradicate it should be undertaken. However they seem to be prolific (as evidenced by the Huggies package) so eradication will be a difficult undertaking.