Rats Pose Threat To Coral Reefs – Pernicious Butterfly Effect?

Rats! They’re everywhere. In the sewers, the bins, the trees, the cellars, The White House, the building sites, the rubbish dumps (White House again) and now, sadly, on coral islands where they are affecting the health of coral reefs.

You see, rats eat the eggs of sea birds, and sea birds excrete guano (poop) that makes its way to the ocean to fertilize the reefs. Rats are therefore destroying these wondrous natural environments that should teem with life but instead are now dying. As if it wasn’t bad enough before when it was just man-made pollution that was causing harm.

Of course the rats only get to these isolated islands because humans bring them there, albeit accidentally. It’s one further example of the pernicious effect that our species is having upon the natural world. But, in the grand scheme, Gaia usually ensures that there’s a balance. We should worry, because effecting that balance might just mean removing us. We have been warned.

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