Twitter has once more nailed its flag to the mast, defending the life and rights of an innocent animal, as the nation mourns the loss of a creature called Dave.
Sadly, 2016 has witnessed the demise of another great creature in the name of science.
This time Dave the earthworm, the longest worm recorded in history, has been killed by the National History Museum.
— NaturalHistoryMuseum (@NHM_London) November 4, 2016
The 40cm (15.7in) worm was the size of a small snake and he weighed 26g, which is ‘the size of a small chocolate bar’.
The beginning of the end occurred when Dave popped his head above ground in a vegetable patch in Widnes, Cheshire. After being spotted by Paul Rees, the earthworm – Lumbricus terrestris – was named Dave by Rees’ stepson George.
He was immediately whisked off by the National History Museum for days of testing. In what they dubbed ‘the sad bit of science’, Dave was killed and added to the National Collection.
Chair of the Earthworm Society and NHM Scientist, Emma Sherlock assured BBC Breakfast viewers that Dave’s death was painless, saying:
It’s always a very painless process in that we anaesthetise the animal first. We were as kind as we possibly could be. We fix him properly and then add him to the national collection, so he’s going to be known as Dave for ever more, and be available for science and scientists all round the world.
In scenes that hit peak Harambe, with #JusticeForDave trending, Twitter responded by sharing its outrage at the loss of such a magnificent beast.
— Sally-Anne Haynes (@bemorespaniel) November 4, 2016
— K (@hippywanna) November 4, 2016
So Dave the Earthworm gets killed just so we can add him to a collection.
Humans are so fucking selfish.
— Jake Pickford (@jakepickford) November 4, 2016
Fancy them offing Dave the Earthworm the callous bastards. In his prime too. What a magnificent beast!
— Despicable D (@despicableHalzE) November 4, 2016
Why am I so triggered about them killing Dave the earthworm ? omgggggg
IT'S JUST THERE WAS NO NEED
— Gael T (@gaeltchye) November 4, 2016
Dave even sent a message from beyond the grave, condemning our actions. It serves as a stark metaphor for the human condition and a reminder not to sweat the small stuff.
— Dave The Worm (@PoorDaveTheWorm) November 4, 2016
In response, a Natural History Museum spokeswoman said:
This may seem sad but natural history collections have always contained dead individuals of plants, microbes, fungi and animals as evidence for study and reference.
These specimens help scientists better understand and protect the natural world, from studying an individual species to looking at environmental impacts of climate change, pesticides or human health.
Big Dave will forever be remembered as a good worm. His memory will last as long as his wriggly worm body.
A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.