Recycling Natura: Animals that reuse

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Recycling occurs everywhere, even animals do it. Animals live in an ecological balance with their surrounding: they only take what they need and create as little waste as possible. You might have heard of mice or racoons that take anything they find to take into their burrows or beavers who build dams with twigs, branches and wood pieces. But recycling in nature is practiced in extreme by some particular animals and insects as well. Let’s take a look at some animals who are amazing recyclers.

Extreme Recyclers in Nature plastic bottle BIRD FEEDER


Birds are great recyclers. They go over the limits, and would qualify as one of those animals who takes reduce, reuse and recycle very seriously. Birds use anything to make their nests, things like threads, pieces of cloth, newspapers, paper clips among many. Some birds have rituals that include making a really nice-looking attractive nests to attract mates. They decorate them with bottle caps and colored plastic or scraps, making reusing sexy! Many seabirds also know how to feast themselves, and they eat up anything they find left by beach visitors.

Hermit Crabs

These cute little fellows recycle all throughout their lives as they grow. This type of crab crustacean doesn’t grow its own shell, so they constantly need to look for abandoned shells to protect themselves. As they grow bigger, they look for a bigger and comfier one. But they can practically use whatever protects them, even plastic caps, glass bottles, cans or shotgun shells. Hermit crabs recycle their dwellings all their lives!


Octopi are some of the smartest animals on Earth, the smartest invertebrate for sure. These animals can figure out mazes, use tools, and plan strategically. Some species have great abilities to build shelter out of debris and anything that works for them. They have been known to use anything from cracked coconut shells, to abandoned seas shells, glass jars, and any other containers they have run into the sea.

recycling tips for the kitchen

Dung Bettles

One of the least wanted jobs, dung beetles are great at collecting cattle’s feces and repurpose it. They are experts in rolling it out in big balls that hey can easily wheel away. Dung bettles use it to build their homes, to lay their eggs on and they also eat it! It’s estimated that these insects have helped the United States cattle industry save $380 million annually by repurposing livestock feces alone. This fantastic recycling ability has even been proposed as a way to help fight global warming.

Recycling is a great way to contribute to our planet and help reduce the number of waste we create. Let’s follow these animals example! Learn more about recycling, like how to Recycle in the Kitchen and why is it so important to Recycle.