Google Doodle wishes you a Happy Earth Day

22 Apr 2014

Japanese macaques feature in today's Google Doodle for Earth Day

Internet search giant Google is celebrating Earth Day with a changeable doodle on its homepage that highlight some of the world’s smallest and most unique animals.

In the doodle – a stylised Google logo – Google spotlights the hummingbird, the dung beetle, the moon jellyfish, veiled chameleon, a puffer fish and Japanese macaques.

There appears to be no particular reason for this selection of animals, aside from all but the macaques being some of the smaller creatures to grace our planet.

The species of macaque monkey is perhaps the most interesting animal to feature out of the six in the doodle. It is the only primate, aside from humans, to live in the colder climates of the northern hemisphere.

The puffer fish in contrast, despite its friendly appearance, is one of the most toxic animals on the planet. Some of its internal organs contain tetrodotoxin, a poisonous substance to almost every animal on Earth.

Earth Day was started back in 1970 to highlight and celebrate the beauty of our planet, but also to raise awareness for the damage we are causing to it from pollution, deforestation and draining its natural resources at an unsustainable level.

It is expected that more than 1bn people will be celebrating Earth Day with a series of events across 192 cities.

The theme of this year’s Earth Day, however, is aimed specifically at the concept of ‘Green Cities’, which aims to get cities working with their communities to make significant efforts to start a transition to a more sustainable future through efficiency upgrades, investment in renewable energy, and regulation reform.

Google is also urging people to tweet some of their best outdoor photos on social media with the hashtag #MyBeautifulEarth. Those photos will be featured in a collage on Google’s dedicated website.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic