Coprolites, or fossilized dung, double as ecological time capsules, preserving an incredible collection of information about past ecosystems.
In Middle Earth (a.k.a. New Zealand) researchers from the University of Adelaide’s Australian Centre for DNA (ACAD) and Landcare Research NZ reconstructed a pre-civilization community using a bird dung time machine. Dung samples were amassed from numerous sites across the continent. The donors: four species of ratite birds including the extinct gian