Which creature has seen most total solar eclipses? – Times of India


NEW DELHI: In an intriguing piece of research published on April 1st, Mark Popinchalk unveiled which creature holds the record for witnessing the most solar eclipses. Surprisingly, humans are far from leading, with horseshoe crabs taking the crown. Over their species’ existence, horseshoe crabs have observed an astonishing 138 trillion solar eclipses, positioning them well ahead of humanity.According to Popinchalk’s findings, it will take humans approximately 10 million years to catch up with these ancient marine animals, a report in Universe Today said.
As the world anticipates another total solar eclipse viewable in many regions on April 8, it’s a timely reminder that these celestial events are not unique to human experience. Eclipses, resulting from a perfect alignment of the Earth, Moon, and Sun, have been a part of Earth’s natural history for millions of years, long before humans entered the scene. This upcoming eclipse will allow hundreds of millions of people to witness the Moon completely blocking the Sun in a spectacular display.
The phenomenon of solar eclipses, including the awe-inspiring “diamond ring effect” captured during the 2023 total solar eclipse from Ah Chong Island, Australia, underscores the universal nature of these events. Animals, too, have been part of the audience for these cosmic shows, although their awareness and response to eclipses vary. Studies, such as those conducted by Hartstone-Rose and his team during the 2017 eclipse, have shown that animals in zoos exhibit altered behaviors, with some reverting to nighttime routines or displaying signs of anxiety, the Universe Today report said.
Popinchalk’s research also highlights the Galapagos turtles‘ curious behavior of looking skyward during an eclipse, prompting questions about their level of awareness and observation of the event. While animal communication remains largely a mystery, the study provokes thought about the broader experience of solar eclipses across Earth’s inhabitants.
Concluding his study, Popinchalk estimated that with a standing population of 120 million, horseshoe crabs would have collectively experienced 1.5 million eclipses, totaling 130 trillion instances. In comparison, humans, with an average population of 1 million and 320,000 eclipses, have only amassed 32 billion experiences, significantly trailing behind the horseshoe crabs.


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