Want to know what the penguins ate? You need to know the color number of such a thing first.
Want to know what the penguins ate? You need to know the color number of such a thing first.
What's going on when you think the colors are pretty? Can you recommend the same lipstick (

Today I would like to first share a working photo of ecologist Casey Youngflesh. You may have thought from the title that this is a penguin researcher, so I'd like to ask you to guess what he is doing in the photo.

it seems that this person is spreading out some red things of different shades into cakes. The crux of the question is what it is.

the answer is penguin shit. One of Youngflesh's jobs is to actually collect feces left by El-Adli penguins, spread them out into cakes for spectral analysis, and bring them back to the laboratory for detailed analysis to establish a link between color and fecal composition.

the color of these penguin shit samples looks good, but obviously their smell is not attractive. "these bird droppings have a pungent fishy smell and are absolutely unpleasant. This is something you have to learn to deal with. " This is how Youngflesh describes his work experience.

in fact, this is a way for researchers to come up with a way to understand the penguin diet. As we can see in the image above, penguin droppings come in a variety of colors, depending on the food they eat (for example, if penguins eat more krill, their feces will look redder). Therefore, the researchers hope to reverse the penguin diet through color and observe the changes in it, in order to understand the changes in the Antarctic ecological environment and to find out the possible reasons for the decline of penguin population.

it certainly takes time to investigate the color number of penguin shit on the spot, but the researchers have a more convenient way to monitor it: look directly at satellite images. In the place where the penguins gather during the breeding season, large pink stains of shit can be clearly seen through satellite images.

(an example of a satellite image)

researchers reported their current observations of penguin shit at a conference last December. Studies have shown that the diets of penguins vary regionally, but there have been no particularly significant changes in the last 30 years.

if you are interested in this study, you can also experience the fun of finding penguin shit through google earth satellite images. ). If you find traces of penguin shit that researchers have missed, you can say that it can not help to advance the research. For detailed instructions, you can see this website: http://www.penguinmap.com/contribute/

PS: seeing here, I think you already know that the picture is a group of El-Adli penguins covered in shit. Although I don't want to imagine the smell of the scene, the color is really pretty. Photo Source: LIAM QUINN

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Source: https://www.sciencenews.org/blog/wild-things/penguin-diet-poop-space-landsat

corresponding Abstracts of Conference papers: https://agu.confex.com/agu/fm18/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/461793