Don’t ask me how I came across this paper…
Apparently blind mole rats can use the geomagnetic forces from the earth’s magnetic field to orient themselves in their completely dark underground environment. The study involved taking 30 or so mole rats and putting them in a giant man-made maze with an even bigger magnet surrounding them to simulate a shifted magnetic field. The scientists were successful in thoroughly confusing the moles rats when they shifted the magnetic field (1).
The real question is what are all the blind mole rats in the world going to do when the earth’s north and south poles flip as they are predicted to do every 300,000 years (2). What will happen to all the earth’s blind mole rats when they think south is north and lose their bearings on which direction their house is and their blind mole rat wives get pissed off that they haven’t come home? What will happen to our fragile eco-system when this inevitable mole-pocalypse occurs? Move over global warming, we’ve got bigger things to worry about.
1. Kimchi, T; Etienne, A; Terkel, J; A subterranean mammal uses the magnetic compass for path integration. PNAS 2003