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We'll take any sh*, thank you.

How to celebrate the beginning of a new month? By sampling new habitats, of course!

Last Friday, the Alpenzoo, Innsbruck opened its doors once again for our working group. Back in 2014, Leis et al. published the first Neocallimastigomycota isolates from the majestic Capra ibex (sampled from the Alpenzoo). This time, guided by the professional keepers Victoria and Rainer, we (Sabine, Wantanasak, and Julia) ventured into the compounds of 10 different animals. The original plan was, of course, to only sample one animal and the Capra ibex as a positive control for the isolation process. But curiosity go the better of us and one and a half hours later, with frozen hands and proud smiles on our faces, we returned to our lab mates, eager to process the 'fresh input'.

Innsbruck, 8 a.m., 6°C above zero. The weather is fine, the hairstyle on point, and the majestic capricorn is eyeing us sceptically while we're trying to pick the freshest poop.

The majestic Capra ibex. They all look a little weirded out by our interest in their poop.

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