Here at Seeker World Headquarters, actually a renovated ice skating rink outside of Reykjavik, we strive to explore all areas of scientific knowledge. To that end, today we explore the enduring mystery of why some animals eat their own poop.
It's gross all right, but actually more interesting than you might think. For instance, with some animals, that stuff they're eating isn't technically feces at all. These critters are essentially recycling their food, allowing for multiple passes through the digestive tract to absorb necessary nutrients. Other animals really do eat feces - their own and others - to acquire certain helpful gut bacteria. If you've got the stomach for it, Jules Suzdaltsev has the details in today's DNews dispatch.
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National Geographic: Why Do Animals--Including Your Dog--Eat Poop?
NCBI: Coprophagy in animals: a review.
Smithsonian Mag: Everyone Poops. Some Animals Eat It. Why?