Last blue whales pooping for the planet loading...
Last blue whales pooping for the planet
Whale manure feeds the gardens of the deep
About Krill

The lowly krill averages only about two inches (five centimeters) in length, but it represents a giant-sized link in the global food chain. These small, shrimp-like crustaceans are essentially the fuel that runs the engine of the Earth’s marine ecosystems.

Krill feed on phytoplankton, microscopic, single-celled plants that drift near the ocean’s surface and live off carbon dioxide and the sun’s rays. They in turn are the main staple in the diets of literally hundreds of different animals, from fish, to birds, to baleen whales.

Simply put, without krill, most of the life forms in the Antarctic would disappear.

Fast Facts

Type: Invertebrate

Diet: Herbivore

Average life span in the wild: 5 years or more

Size: 2.4 in (6 cm)

Weight: 0.035 oz (1 g)

Group name: Swarm

Did you know? Scientists estimate that the total weight of all the Antarctic krill is more than the total weight of all humans on Earth.


Never miss a Nat Geo moment

Your email address
We use our own and third-party cookies to improve our services, personalise your advertising and remember your preferences. If you continue browsing, or click on the accept button on this banner, we understand that you accept the use of cookies on our website. For more information visit our Cookies Policy AcceptClose cookie policy overlay