Giant kraken lair discovered

Long before whales, the oceans of Earth were roamed by a very different kind of air-breathing leviathan. Snaggle-toothed ichthyosaurs larger than school buses swam at the top of the Triassic Period ocean food chain, or so ...

S.African rangers kill poachers in Kruger park

Authorities have killed two suspected poachers, arrested two others and found 11 rhino carcasses in the same area of South Africa's Kruger National Park in one week, a spokesman said Thursday.

Wood on the seafloor: An oasis for deep-sea life

Trees do not grow in the deep sea, nevertheless sunken pieces of wood can develop into oases for deep-sea life - at least temporarily until the wood is fully degraded. A team of Max Planck researchers from Germany now showed ...

Giant prehistoric elephant slaughtered by early humans

Research by a University of Southampton archaeologist suggests that early humans, who lived thousands of years before Neanderthals, were able to work together in groups to hunt and slaughter animals as large as the prehistoric ...

New Zealand counts wildlife cost from oil spill

In a wildlife rescue centre on New Zealand's Bay of Plenty, volunteers grimly bag the oil-soaked bodies of dead birds, victims of the country's biggest sea pollution disaster.

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Carrion

Carrion (from the Latin "caro", meaning "meat") refers to the carcass of a dead animal. Carrion is an important food source for large carnivores and omnivores in most ecosystems. Examples of carrion-eaters (or scavengers) include vultures, hawks, eagles, hyenas, Virginia Opossum, Tasmanian Devils, coyotes, Komodo dragons, and burying beetles. Many invertebrates like the burying beetles, as well as maggots of calliphorid flies and Flesh-flies also eat carrion, playing an important role in recycling nitrogen and carbon in animal remains.

Carrion begins to decay the moment of the animal's death, and it will increasingly attract insects and breed bacteria. Not long after the animal has died, its body will begin to exude a foul odor caused by the presence of bacteria and the emission of cadaverine and putrescine.

Some plants and fungi smell like decomposing carrion and attract insects that aid in reproduction. Plants that exhibit this behavior are known as carrion flowers. Stinkhorn mushrooms are examples of fungi with this characteristic.

The word carrion is often used in Danish mythology to describe animals that have been sacrificed and animals that have been killed due to the gods' fury.[citation needed]

Sometimes carrion is used to describe an infected carcass that is diseased and shouldn't be touched. An example of carrion being used to describe dead and rotting bodies in literature may be found in William Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar:

Another example can be found in Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe when the title character kills an unknown bird for food but finds "its flesh was Carrion, and fit for nothing." A third example can be found in J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings in a footnote in Appendix A. The dwarves resort to a mass burning of the bodies of their dead following the War of the Dwarves and Orcs "rather than leave their kin to beast or bird or carrion-orc."

In Islam, it is forbidden to eat rotting meat.[7]

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