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Why Whale Poo is Important to You

By   /  January 26, 2015  /  1 Comment

While we’re busy making using our livestock to fertilize our pasture, we never stopped to think about how manure is distributed in the oceans, and how important that might be to our own health. Here’s a video that explains it.

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Raising pasture-fed animals, we’re all aware of the importance of manure and where it lands. We’re also becoming more well-versed in the carbon cycle and how healthy grasslands can contribute to carbon sequestration and planetary healthy. But since most of us don’t spend a lot of time on the ocean, we may not have considered how the same things that contribute to health on land, are also happening in ocean ecosystems, where enormous whales distribute nutrients in their manure, and act as giant carbon sinks.

This 5-minute TED talk by Marine Biologist Asha De Vos explains the importance of whale poo, and how whales as “ecosystem engineers” contribute to ocean and planetary health. It’s a striking look at how everything and everyone is interconnected.


Here’s the link for our tablet readers.

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  • Published: 6 years ago on January 26, 2015
  • By:
  • Last Modified: January 28, 2015 @ 7:49 am
  • Filed Under: Consider This

About the author

Publisher, Editor and Author

Kathy worked with the Bureau of Land Management for 12 years before founding Livestock for Landscapes in 2004. Her twelve years at the agency allowed her to pursue her goal of helping communities find ways to live profitably AND sustainably in their environment. She has been researching and working with livestock as a land management tool for over a decade. When she's not helping farmers, ranchers and land managers on-site, she writes articles, and books, and edits videos to help others turn their livestock into landscape managers.

1 Comment

  1. Juan P. Alvez says:

    Hi Kathy

    Dr. Asha de Vos was talking about the –excellent– work published by Roman and others in 2014. (see: http://www.esajournals.org/doi/abs/10.1890/130220).

    Luckily, we have Dr. Roman and his brilliant insights in our team, investigating how biodiversity affects cattle well-being!

    Juan Alvez

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