Inspired by the "Improved Horse Drawn Carriage". I like
the idea of animals going out and harvesting grass and
other natural vegetation for energy. And when I say
collecting energy, it could be in the form of food for
humans, raw material for thermal depolymerization, etc.
energy to electrical is fine, but I
don't see how that could be accomplished without severely
cramping the lifestyle of the animals.
This is kind of like the open range model of cattle
ranching, or hunting wild animals. But cattle ranching
doesn't work too well in some environments, and hunting is
inefficient and objectionable to many.
Lets think about deer. They live and forage over a wide
area. Some number of them end up dying in the wild and
feeding the scavengers and predators. While that's fine, us
humans are the TOP predators who aren't to proud to
scavenge as well, so I have no problem letting other
scavengers and predators play a somewhat reduced role.
So we just need to make a device that attaches to each
dear and tracks its location and health. When one starts to
get old, rather than let it die in the woods, the device
would make scary sounds in a directional nature to herd
the animal to an appropriate location where is can be
collected. If the deer population is growing too fast for an
area to support, younger ones could be herded and
collected as well. Obviously pregnant females would need
to be directed to an appropriate location as well so the
newborn fawns could be tagged.
This might be applied to other kinds of animals as well,
but the tracking devices would be easier to build and more
cost effective for the larger animals. The intention is to
allow the animals to lead basically a normal life, but then
insert humans approximately at the point where the animal
might otherwise be killed by a natural predator or would
die and be consumed by scavengers. This also allows
control of the population to avoid having too many for the
available resources in the winter.
There is plenty of room for innovation in tagging methods
using drones etc. to make this more efficient.