In a new study, researchers found that abundant chicken consumption and the weird skeletons of modern chickens will form a unique fingerprint of our time, leaving traces of the Anthropocene era for millions of years. The human impact on Earth, a period known as Anthropocene, would be observable by future civilizations or extraterrestrial visitors long after the life on Earth is gone.
We already influenced the planet’s ecosystems, and long after the Earth will become deserted, visitors would know that another civilization inhabited the Earth. They would find that out by identifying nuclear isotopes in sedimentary rock, fossilized remains of plastic on the bottom of the world’s oceans, and chicken bones, according to the new study.
As chicken consumption is growing faster than ever nowadays, so does the populations of chickens, so “if you combined the mass of all these chickens, it would be greater than that of all other birds,” says Smithsonian Mag, citing James Gorman from the New York Times.
Chicken Bones Represent A Unique Fingerprint Of Our Time
As reported by the scientists in their new study, chicken bones would form as a unique fingerprint of our time, proving our existence long after the life on Earth is gone.
“In one study, increasing [chicken] slaughter age from five weeks to nine weeks resulted in a sevenfold increase in mortality rate. The rapid growth of leg and breast muscle tissue leads to a relative decrease in the size of other organs such as the heart and lungs, which restricts their function and thus longevity. Changes in the center of gravity of the body, reduced pelvic limb muscle mass and increased pectoral muscle mass cause poor locomotion and frequent lameness,” the scientist wrote in their study.
“There has been a steady increase in growth rate since 1964, and the growth rate of modern broilers is now three times higher than that of the red junglefowl,” the scientists added. They also said that thanks to these changes, future archaeologists would determine what was Anthropocene like as chicken bones would be a unique fingerprint of our time.
Jasmine holds a Master’s in Journalism from Ryerson University in Toronto and writes professionally in a broad variety of genres. She has worked as a senior manager in public relations and communications for major telecommunication companies, and is the former Deputy Director for Media Relations with the Modern Coalition. Jasmine writes primarily in our LGBTTQQIAAP and Science section.