The key to predicting climate change? Just study the temperature of earthworm poo, say scientists

The Daily Mail reports:

Scientists have revealed the key to predicting climate change – and it lies in the excrement produced by earthworms.

Researchers from the University of York and the University of Reading discovered that earthworm faeces – also known as casting – contain tiny granules of calcite.

After keeping different earthworms at different temperatures, they were able to prove that these granules retain a ‘memory’ of the temperature of the air in which they are excreted.

This means that by studying fossilised samples of earthworm poo and testing the residual temperature of the granules inside, scientists can now track changes in the Earth’s climate over thousands of years.

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8 thoughts on “The key to predicting climate change? Just study the temperature of earthworm poo, say scientists”

  1. “The researchers are now collecting samples from archaeological sites dating back thousands of years to build up a picture of past climates and how the future climate will develop.”

    Fossils are defined as 10,000 years old, by definition.

    “This means that by studying fossilised samples of earthworm poo and testing the residual temperature of the granules inside, scientists can now track changes in the Earth’s climate over thousands of years.”

    “Fossilised” means mineral replacement.

    This article is from the Daily Mail. I assume it’s the writer that is clueless.

  2. “The small lumps of chalk-like material and their change in temperature can then be used to predict future climate trends.”

    I’ll stick to tea leaves, thank you very much.

    They describe the process of leaving tree rings – oops! – poo, and that they have characteristics that equate to air temperature.

    Earthworms are burrowing animals. Their temp would be equivalent to the ground temperature, not the air temperature.

  3. An odd thing here, the value of what’s being studied is actually higher than the result of the study.

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