banner-no-place-nogreen.jpg

Ear wax tells the story of a whale's life in Baylor University research

A blue whale is seen in Timor waters. (AP Photo/NRETAS, Kiki Dethmers, HO)

A blue whale is seen in Timor waters. (AP Photo/NRETAS, Kiki Dethmers, HO)

Listen

Scientists  at Baylor University in Texas have developed a method to learn much about a whale's life through examinations of the animal's ear wax plug.

Ear plugs have been used to determine the age of whales for a long time, but the methodology by which contaminants and hormones can be read is new.  It gives scientists a chemical timeline of the whale's life.

Click 'Listen' to hear Baylor University biologist Stephen Trumble explain how he and his team developed the new process, and about what scientists learned from the ear plug of a Blue Whale.

Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Submission Policy

Note: The CBC does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that comments are moderated and published according to our submission guidelines.