Question:

Hi, I have a question about Noah's Ark that I recently stumbled upon. With all the animals that God brought to Noah for the Ark, how did the animal feces get thrown out? Did all eight people take care of all of that and take care of the animals with food, etc.?


Answer:

God gave Noah instructions to build a giant boat, called an ark. The word ark literally means a box. The ark would be made of gopher wood. Today, we are uncertain which type of tree the ancients called gopher wood. Most scholars believe it refers to white oak, but they can't be certain. The boards would be sealed with pitch (i.e. pine tar). The combination would create a very strong, water-tight vessel.

The size of the ark was to be 300 x 50 x 30 cubits (438 x 73 x 48 feet). The shape of the boat is the ideal ratio for stability. It would be nearly impossible to capsize. Tests in a wave pool have shown that a boat of this shape would not capsize even in rolls approaching 90 degrees. It would not make a fast ship, but without power that was not a concern. By the way, today's supertankers use approximately the same size ratio as the ark.

The ark had one door and one window. The window was one cubit (18 inches) high and ran the length of the ark.

Inside the ark, there were three decks. The volume capacity of the ark would be 1,400,000 cubic feet -- the same volume as 522 livestock railroad cars. By the way, one railroad car can carry 240 sheep, so you can see that the ark could hold a large number of animals.

It took Noah and his sons about 120 years to complete the building of the ark.

Prior to the flood, God sent animals to Noah to place on the ark. Noah did not gather the animals, the animals came to Noah (Genesis 6:20). Two animals of every species (kind) were placed in the ark. For example, two dogs, a male and female, were placed on the ark. However, there would not be two of each type of dog. Seven animals of every clean species were placed in the ark (Genesis 7:2-3). The clean species are the domesticated animals used to support mankind. This provided three pairs of each species which would quickly restore the flocks plus one extra animal for a sacrifice at the end of the flood (Genesis 8:20). Scholars estimate that there would be approximately 75,000 animals on the ark.

If you assume that the average animal size was about the size of a sheep, the animals would only take up half the available space in the ark. The remainder of the space would be used to store food for the journey. It is possible that the animals were not full adults and therefore would take up even less space.

Many animals hibernate and could spend the time on the ark sleeping, which would require less food and would generate less waste. Also, as the food is eaten, there would be increasing space to store waste matter.