Atmosphere

Whale Poop Is Sequestering Carbon In The Atmosphere

Whales often poop in the deep ocean, and that poop rises, bringing nutrients up to the surface. This whale poop acts as a fertilizer for shallow ecosystems. Because these phytoplankton are getting important nutrients from the whale poop, huge blooms of phytoplankton develop, soaking up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. It is estimated that sperm whale poop helps sequester 200,000 tons of carbon from the atmosphere every year.

Key Facts In This Video

  1. When whales are born, some are still covered in fuzz called lanugo. 00:53

  2. Because whales descended from animals with limbs under their bodies, their tails are horizontal and not vertical. 01:46

  3. Sperm whale poop helps sequester an estimated 200,000 tons of carbon from the atmosphere every year. 05:13

Written by Curiosity Staff September 18, 2015

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