Science Reveals the Shockingly Simple Step You Can Take to Stop COVID-19

Hint: It’s not quarantines or masks

Thomas Smith


Photo by CDC on Unsplash

If you want to keep a rabbit population in check, killing rabbits doesn’t help.

Sound like the most bizarre hook for an article you’ve ever read? Let’s take a step back for a moment.

Rabbits are among the most prolific breeders in the animal kingdom. A single female rabbit can have up to 12 babies every 30 days. In less than six months, all of those rabbits can then start making little rabbits of their own.

In 3 years, one mommy rabbit can produce 50,000+ descendants. Unconstrained, in 7 years, she could have 95 billion. Rabbit populations are a classic example of exponential growth. They build slowly at first, and then quickly mushroom to outlandish numbers.

So why isn’t the world overrun by hundreds of billions of rabbits? Because the environment only has the capacity to support a certain finite number of their fluffy ilk.

Hit that number, and it doesn’t matter how fast your bunnies breed. There aren’t enough resources to support more, and the population levels off. That critical number is called the “carrying capacity” of the environment.

When smart ecologists want to control a population of rabbits (or, more often, rats in a city), they don’t go around committing bunny genocide and knocking off individuals. The population would just replenish itself in a few months. Instead, they work to reduce the carrying capacity of the environment.

Want fewer rabbits? Build up the local wolf and fox population. These native predators eat the rabbits (sorry, Bugs), keeping their numbers in check. Or reduce their food supply. Or take away the places they hide and breed. All these moves reduce the carrying capacity of the environment. It’s the only way to keep an exponentially-growing population in check.

At first glimpse, fluffy bunny rabbits and the murderous particles of the COVID-19 coronavirus don’t seem to have much in common. But actually, they follow the exact same mathematics.

During an epidemic (or a pandemic), viruses are exactly like breeding bunnies. One infected person can infect 10 others, who quickly infect 10…