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Thread: What really killed the dinosaurs

  1. #1 What really killed the dinosaurs 
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    I had one of those little epiphanies that I sometimes have, and I had to share it with someone who might care, so I used the old Google and found these forums. I don't think I have heard anyone present this particular theory, although there is rarely any such thing as an original thought, so perhaps this has already been discussed at great length, and I am just not aware of it.

    We all know our planet is in serious trouble due to the environmental destruction wrought by the human animal. Of course I pay attention to news reporting and science programs and documentaries about this, and this is very much in the news now. I have also always been fascinated by dinosaurs, what the planet looked like all those years ago, and what it is that might have destroyed them.

    I also have a mind that constantly draws parallels between seemingly disparate fields of thought, and this morning as I was watching yet another interview with an environmental scientist, a little light came on.

    I guess the current most commonly touted theory about what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs is the meteorite theory, at least that is the one this particular scientific civilian is aware of. That theory has never seemed to me to be particularly satisfying. I realize a huge meteor strike could have a devastating effect on the planet and it's ecosystems, but it still doesn't seem to me to be enough to explain why these creatures that seemingly dominated the earth at one time, vanished (and yes I am aware that birds are the descendants of dinosaurs, so in a way they didn't completely vanish).

    What if the real reason for the mass extinction that lead to the disappearance of the dinosaur wasn't solely a meteorite, or some single cataclysmic incident? What if the real reason was environmental destruction caused by over population, and destructive feeding and foraging behaviours?

    My basic theory is that over population and destructive feeding and foraging habits severely stressed the earth's ecosystems, and then perhaps, a cataclysmic event, such as a meteor strike, created a chain reaction that destroyed all but the hardiest species (I'm thinking here of the Cretaceous equivalent of rats and cockroaches). But the foundation of the chain reaction wasn't laid by the cataclysmic event, it was simply the trigger. The true causal foundation was environmental destruction wrought by over population and destructive foraging and feeding habits.

    I guess the image I keep seeing is that of a very large ant colony. A very large ant colony significantly impacts it's local environment. In many ways humanity's relationship to the planetary environment is an extrapolation of the ant colony effect. It isn't too much of a stretch to imagine that a heavy population of any particular species, or class, might have a similar effect, especially if that class had evolved destructive feeding and foraging behaviours.


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    I just thought I'd add that this theory might well explain the series of mass extinctions that occurred during the Cretaceous period.


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    It is believed that dinosaurs were in decline prior to the meteorite impact, but what reason do you have to believe it was over population and feeding habits? Was dinosaur feeding activity particularly destructive and how did reduction in available food sources not inhibit population growth? How would this account not only for land animal, but marine reptile decline? Nearly half of existing invertebrate species disappeared as well as flying reptiles. (I use the term reptile for lack of a better.)

    There are many propositions for potential extinction incentives. Some say during the late cretaceous, insect populations boomed which may have spread disease. New mammal species may have fed on dinosaur eggs. Climate change, volcanic activity or a supernova all had the potential to put dinosaurs on the brink.
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    One of the things that twigged for me was the mass extinctions of coral during the Cretaceous. A similar thing is happening right now. There are several huge dead zones in the oceans right now where fertilizers have caused plankton growth explosions, followed by death, followed by explosive bacterial growth which in turn depletes all the oxygen from the water which creates a dead organic "blob" of massive proportions.

    The point I am making is that often the most devastating effects of over population are indirect. We have this romantic idea of the "natural world" at times, which has some roots in our human religious belief systems. We have this idea that somehow nature is "good" and "perfect" and humans are the only animal capable of destructive behaviour on a massive scale. I would be very much surprised if, in the very long history of life on planet Earth, there weren't other species, or classes of species that have evolved behaviours that might actually be successful in terms of their shorter term benefits to the species, but in the long term, extremely destructive to their environment, and ultimately to their own survival.

    I expect the truth is that there is more than one actor at work in the mass extinctions that occurred during the Cretaceous period but it wouldn't surprise me if over population and the subsequent environmental damage might have been one of the contributing factors. Organisms living in an environment which is under stress will also tend to be more vulnerable to other destructive forces, such as disease, or destructive predation.

    And if dinosaurs were in decline prior to the cataclysmic meteorite impact, that would actually fit in with my theory very well.
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    An animal, other than humans, that destroys the environment? Try the African elephant. It pushes over trees to eat the leaves. It does this to such a degree that entire rain forests disappear, and are replaced by grasslands. It has been doing this for so long that entire new ecosystems have developed around the resulting grasslands. Numerous species evolved to exploit those grassland environments, including giraffes, zebra, gazelles, wildebeest etc etc.

    The truth is that there have always been animals that destroy the environment. What happens is that a new environment arises, and new organisms to exploit it. A new ecosystem. It is even happening today with human generated new environments. Think of all the animals that exploit cities. Rats would be the number one example, but there are many others.
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    remember also that during the period bridging the K-T event the flood basalts of the Deccan traps formed - this would have raised CO2 levels and lowered ocean pH, as well as increased water temperatures, which could account for coral reefs being stressed
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    Hi,

    I think dinos did not have the potential left to reproduce themselves, at the end. This was true due to their small brain and large torso and extremities. It must have been just like any beast was one of an other race which could not reproduce.

    Those who could are being around, still.

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Hi,

    I think dinos did not have the potential left to reproduce themselves, at the end. The was true due to their small brain and large torso and extremities. It must have been just like any beast was one of an other race which could not reproduce.

    Those who could are being around, still.

    Steve
    hmm ... i'd say you need to update your sources somewhat - racial senescence has not been in vogue for close to a century (and thoroughly disproved as well)
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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    Quote Originally Posted by marnixR
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Hi,

    I think dinos did not have the potential left to reproduce themselves, at the end. The was true due to their small brain and large torso and extremities. It must have been just like any beast was one of an other race which could not reproduce.

    Those who could are being around, still.

    Steve
    hmm ... i'd say you need to update your sources somewhat - racial senescence has not been in vogue for close to a century (and thoroughly disproved as well)
    First,

    let me say, I'm sorry therefore my post was misspelled. I corrected the mistake already. Second, I'm not sure if you got my point. I was not talking about a senescence. Now I hope I'm getting what it says.

    They surly where practically capable to beget offsprings, which they surly where trying also, vividly. The only thing was, any animal was like belonging to an other race now, after the millions of years they where around. They had like specialized (now as I'm typing - speci... like species ) as if each one of them was like an other species, who genetically where no longer compatible, however.

    An impact of some sort of space debris would not have had such a devastating effect on live on earth, but if it would have, none of any sort of life would have been being alive still. Not Flora nor fauna, but, that's not the case. Human mankind was gonna be cleverer.

    Steve
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    A meteor impact is very capable of destroying most of the food chain removing the entire top by starvation. I'm curious what observation doesn't match the meteor strike hypothesis? The timing, potential catastrophic effects and mass extinctions seem to match.



    There are super predator models that show that a species can be too successful and take down itself after driving it's prey into extinction.

    I've never read of models about it, but I imagine super-prey models might also exist though their impact might be less catastrophic--the recent demise of the American Cheetah might be the result of pronghorn finally evolving to out run and out maneuver it's primary hunter.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    I'm curious what observation doesn't match the meteor strike hypothesis? The timing, potential catastrophic effects and mass extinctions seem to match.
    Well for one thing there has been more than one mass extinction. Do they all coincide with meteor strikes? My guess is no. We are also in the middle of a mass extinction, and the reasons are pretty clear, and they also are not due to a meteor strike.

    I'm not suggesting that there have been other species that have created an industrial base which has wrought destruction of the scale we are currently witnessing, but it seems to me that it is entirely possible that Earth has seen other dominant species, or classes of species, whose "success" has resulted in catastrophic environmental failure. When you see the amount of damage humans have been able to do in what is, relative to the history of life on planet Earth, the blink of an eye, it isn't too much of a stretch to consider that other species may have also been capable of tremendous environmental damage.

    And I choose the phrase "catastrophic environmental failure" deliberately. Because I am certain there would never be one single factor at play in such a scenario. Over population, a changing environment, loss or destruction of habitat, disease, loss or destruction of food sources, competition for habitat and food from other more successful species - the factors resulting in the extinction of a single species are often multiple, with complex co-dependencies. How much more so the extinction of an entire class of species?
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    The last ninja, after killing everything and astral projecting through a black hole
    Dick, be Frank.

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    It is worth remembering that ecologies do not undergo catastrophes. What they undergo is change. Sometimes that change, from our human limited perspective, appears to be catastrophic. However, events that follow often make it seem otherwise.

    The KT event, killing the dinosaurs, led to the explosion of the mammals and birds, and a massive range of new species with interesting new ways of living in the ecology. The present event, with humans causing widespread extinctions, may have similar important effects on the development of the Earth's biosphere. We simply do not know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Llewen
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    I'm curious what observation doesn't match the meteor strike hypothesis? The timing, potential catastrophic effects and mass extinctions seem to match.
    Well for one thing there has been more than one mass extinction. Do they all coincide with meteor strikes? My guess is no. We are also in the middle of a mass extinction, and the reasons are pretty clear, and they also are not due to a meteor strike.
    Ok, fair enough. I don't doubt other mechanisms might exist for mass extinction and some might be possibilities.

    The relevant questions are:
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    Which other hypothesis, including others that might have caused other mass extinctions seem to fit the observational data better?

    What species do you propose caused the mass extinction? You used man as an example, but I doubt there's any other example from the past which rivals our species ability to impact the hydrosphere, atmosphere and geology. The only possible example would be the first life capable of photosynthesis, which over perhaps tens of millions of years drove anaerobic bacteria to near extinction.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    butterflies - if conditions post-impact were so awful globally how did they manage to survive ?
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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    Quote Originally Posted by marnixR
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    butterflies - if conditions post-impact were so awful globally how did they manage to survive ?
    I don't know much about butterflies but they would seem particularly well adapted to survive with their egg and pupa stages already adapted to be dormant during long periods of cold such as winter for many of their species.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    The relevant questions are:
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    Which other hypothesis, including others that might have caused other mass extinctions seem to fit the observational data better?

    What species do you propose caused the mass extinction? You used man as an example, but I doubt there's any other example from the past which rivals our species ability to impact the hydrosphere, atmosphere and geology. The only possible example would be the first life capable of photosynthesis, which over perhaps tens of millions of years drove anaerobic bacteria to near extinction.
    Well my question is, has anyone attempted to build a computer model of the global ecosystems during the height of the dominance of dinosaurs as a class of species? The ecological damage that elephants do, and the way they change their environment, has already been mentioned. Well many of the herbivorous dinosaurs were quite a bit larger than elephants. Do we know enough about the formation of fossils to be able to extrapolate any kind of population estimates from the numbers we have found?
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    The point I made earlier is that key species (like man and like the elephant) may have a big imact and even cause extinctions, but the main change is simply to push an ecology in a different direction.

    Another example that might be of interest is when the isthmus of Panama was formed. For mega-millions of years North and South America were separate and there was ocean between them. Continental drift brought them together, permitting northern species to move south and southern to move north. The subsequent mix-up caused a large number of species to go extinct.

    There is no way that computer models of global environment around the KT event can be made. It is tough enough doing them for the present world, and their accuracy is still a matter of debate. We simply do not have the basic data to build a global climate model for 60 million years ago.

    There definitely would have been dinosaurs that had a very big effect on local ecologies - like the elephant, consuming forests, or in unpredictable other ways. My own opinion, though, FWIW, is that the impact would be too small to cause a mass extinction. After all, the elephant simply created a new ecology.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    It is worth remembering that ecologies do not undergo catastrophes. What they undergo is change. Sometimes that change, from our human limited perspective, appears to be catastrophic. However, events that follow often make it seem otherwise.

    The KT event, killing the dinosaurs, led to the explosion of the mammals and birds, and a massive range of new species with interesting new ways of living in the ecology. The present event, with humans causing widespread extinctions, may have similar important effects on the development of the Earth's biosphere. We simply do not know.
    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    The point I made earlier is that key species (like man and like the elephant) may have a big imact and even cause extinctions, but the main change is simply to push an ecology in a different direction.

    Another example that might be of interest is when the isthmus of Panama was formed. For mega-millions of years North and South America were separate and there was ocean between them. Continental drift brought them together, permitting northern species to move south and southern to move north. The subsequent mix-up caused a large number of species to go extinct.

    There is no way that computer models of global environment around the KT event can be made. It is tough enough doing them for the present world, and their accuracy is still a matter of debate. We simply do not have the basic data to build a global climate model for 60 million years ago.

    There definitely would have been dinosaurs that had a very big effect on local ecologies - like the elephant, consuming forests, or in unpredictable other ways. My own opinion, though, FWIW, is that the impact would be too small to cause a mass extinction. After all, the elephant simply created a new ecology.
    Interesting points. It's true we just don't have the data.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    I think, a meteors impact causing the demise of dinosaurs off earths surface isn't being a valid argument, generally. Such an impact, more or less, has the effect a huge stone has being smashed to the ground, powerfully.

    What's gonna happen? Not much, even if there will be a huge crater left the dust cloud won't mantle earth from sunlight at all. The meteors are not stuffed with explosives. They are, like I said, merely as a huge stone or rock.

    I have been touring an old church ones, when the guide explained there was an old cannonball still sticking in a brick wall from around 1500 or something. I don't remember. But this has been the same principle.

    The first such cannonballs had the job to only destroy the structure to make way for moving up soldiers to taking in the.... whatsoever.

    Such impact wasn't to liken to what was being shown on TV theses days. Not to an explosion, nor to an atomic bomb going off.

    But, often a meteors impact was animated as if
    it was to be seen as one of either one.

    It's not like that.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    What observational data seems to falsify the meteor strike hypothesis?
    I think, a meteors impact causing the demise of dinosaurs off earths surface isn't being a valid argument, generally. Such an impact, more or less, has the effect a huge stone has being smashed to the ground, powerfully.

    What's gonna happen? Not much, even if there will be a huge crater left the dust cloud won't mantle earth from sunlight at all. The meteors are not stuffed with explosives. They are, like I said, merely as a huge stone or rock.

    I have been touring an old church ones, when the guide explained there was an old cannonball still sticking in a brick wall from around 1500 or something. I don't remember. But this has been the same principle.

    The first such cannonballs had the job to only destroy the structure to make way for moving up soldiers to taking in the.... whatsoever.

    Such impact wasn't to liken to what was being shown on TV theses days. Not to an explosion, nor to an atomic bomb going off.

    But, often a meteors impact was animated as if
    it was to be seen as one of either one.

    It's not like that.

    Steve
    First you have to remember the speed involved in an asteroid impact is much much greater then that of a cannon ball. This means that when the asteroid hits the atmosphere it heats up intensely and begins to vaporize/melt. Plus the size is massively magnified from that of a cannon ball, and much brittler so more prone to disintegration explosion upon impact. if you have ever seen a photograph of the point when a cannonball impacts something you will note the large spray of material , magnify that to the impact of a 6 mile in diameter asteroid which created a 110 mile wide crater. The impact is thought to have produced not only dust but massive tsunamis and massive amounts of sulfur dioxide resulting in storms of acid rain killing the plants and algea which form the basses of the marine and land food chains


    Also food for thought is the fact that there have been 5 major extinction events in history.
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    This was all true. With regards to the cannonball, I only meant it had not been being packed with explosives (not back then ) and would not have had such a spectacular impact on any object as often shown on TV. That's don due to gain more viewers.

    An other indication was there are species left over from the dinos very times. Hence, there was likely not a global catastrophe which was killing all of any life on earth.

    I'm referring to, an impact of any cosmic object had darkening the sky so any plants would have died first (due to the lack of sunlight ). Then dinosaurs would have been dying. They wouldn't have had no food no more.

    But, therefore such could have happened the catastrophe must have been globally and no species would have survived. Non Crocodiles non birds, not any species. This but was not the case. It's simply not true.

    An other indication was the history of earths origin in our part of the milky way. Cosmic objects around here are very dense compared to other regions in space, I know. They all will have had an influence of the shaping of earth as well. I mean, when they have become one part of earth as it originated there was none left that could impact it afterwards. It must have been a huge impact to extinguish all life. But such impacts are no common matters, and I don't know about any crater which was big enough to be the result of a massive impact of such a huge one.

    Perhaps below the oceans surface, I don't know. It's generally more likely to hit the ocean than land.

    Steve
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    The amount of energy from an impact is simply calculated. Energy of impact is half of mass times velocity squared. A mass of millions of tonnes striking at 10 km per second means enormous energy. All the atom bombs in history are a squib by comparison.

    I have just been watching a Blue Planet episode on TV, and they talk of the degradation of a whale carcass a mile below the sea's surface. It takes literally years for all the scavengers to clean it up. The asteroid destruction of a forest means massively more biomass, and enormously more time needed to clean up the residual. This applies to forests all over the world, destroyed by sunlight blocking. However, the seeds remain viable, and many seeds remain viable for centuries.

    It makes sense that the larger animals at the top of the food chain, and those that depend on fresh plant material all die off. However, smaller animals feeding on tiny invertebrates, including birds and mammals, might survive on a limited food chain based on small organisms that can survive on long dead plant material. It might even be that the only animal life will be those living in soil, living off humus, and their predators. Eventually, when the skies clear, the viable seeds germinate, and new forests start to grow - this time minus the big herbivores and predators.

    In time, the tiny survivors evolve into a new ecosystem involving a new lot of big herbivores and predators.
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    This was all true. With regards to the cannonball, I only meant it had not been being packed with explosives (not back then ) and would not have had such a spectacular impact on any object as often shown on TV. That's don due to gain more viewers.
    The TV depictions probably don't overestimate the damage and effects at all: There's a gigantic crater, now filled in along the Southern Coast of the Bay of Campeche; There are glass fragments from molten and resolidified ejection of rock from the blast all over North America--all of which would have been glowing red and white as it rained fairy death to anything on the surface; there is the KT layer itself with it's iridium showing global distribution of fine particles which probably resulted in at least six months of near darkness; some models show that because the impact hit a high sulfur area there might have been sulfur aerosol added to the atmosphere which took years to "wash" out and would have reduced temperatures for decades; there would have been an enormous Tsunami hundreds of feet high that devastated the Gulf Coast for dozens of miles inland and inundated the coast of the Atlantic basin; there is evidence of simultaneous eruptions at the opposite side which is consistent with models which show possible crust rupture due to the convergence of seismic waves triggered by the impact resulting in a period of intense volcanism and all it's horrendous effects; there's high fern pollen counts after the KT period which is consistent with fern recolonizing a devastated landscape. There's absolutely no doubt that an impact could have brought wholesale ruin on the planet.

    Why didn't it kill everything? As one observation life in the winter hemisphere, and all the life in those ecosystems, would already be largely dormant during the worst dark months and chill following the impact.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    This was all true. With regards to the cannonball, I only meant it had not been being packed with explosives (not back then ) and would not have had such a spectacular impact on any object as often shown on TV. That's don due to gain more viewers.

    An other indication was there are species left over from the dinos very times. Hence, there was likely not a global catastrophe which was killing all of any life on earth.

    I'm referring to, an impact of any cosmic object had darkening the sky so any plants would have died first (due to the lack of sunlight ). Then dinosaurs would have been dying. They wouldn't have had no food no more.

    But, therefore such could have happened the catastrophe must have been globally and no species would have survived. Non Crocodiles non birds, not any species. This but was not the case. It's simply not true.

    An other indication was the history of earths origin in our part of the milky way. Cosmic objects around here are very dense compared to other regions in space, I know. They all will have had an influence of the shaping of earth as well. I mean, when they have become one part of earth as it originated there was none left that could impact it afterwards. It must have been a huge impact to extinguish all life. But such impacts are no common matters, and I don't know about any crater which was big enough to be the result of a massive impact of such a huge one.

    Perhaps below the oceans surface, I don't know. It's generally more likely to hit the ocean than land.

    Steve
    OK Im rather confused now, who said anything about "extinguishing all life". The impact destabilized food chains and the major apex fauna went extinct. this result does not in any way mean that all lower sections of the food webs have to be eradicated also.

    The extinction event at he end of the Permian is estimated to have eradicated ~90% of all marine life and ~70% of all terrestrial life. All together a much larger event. And it appears to be centered around the emergence of the Central Atlantic magmatic province, which shows that all the has to happen is enough disruption to the food webs for specialized groups to be affected.
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    Hello, very well done, but any equation about an impact says nothing until it happens finally. You might know the movies going like, no the volcano does not erupt, not now, it's being all save around here.? Again, I meant the over the top animation of such impacts all of us are used to by today, more or less. There won't be explosives going off at all.

    Sure, the amount of energy will be huge, but earth was very voluminous as well. I think an impact was being seen merely a little puff. Folks had about the same thoughts back when the first atomic bombs where fired. It's say they thought it's like a chain reaction which could not be gotten under control again, ones the bomb went off. This has not happened.

    I still think the effect of a meteor impact will have killed all of life on earth, if it killed the dinosaurs. This was but of no substance since crocodiles are existent still today, for example..

    Other species not only those being tiny or living in awkward places can be traced back even well before the dinosaurs. Right.

    Therefore, something must have happened which effected only the species of dinosaurs. The ones who where very old as an own species, class or subclass or those who did have a huge body and extremities compared to their brain.

    Steve
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    Other animals that went extinct with the dinosaurs (totaling ~60% of all life on earth):

    Ammonites
    much of the calcareous nanoplankton species
    Many dinoflagellates
    98% of the colonial coral species
    35% of the echinoderm genera
    Belemnoids
    Hippuritoida (rudist bivalves)
    Inoceramidae (giant scallops)
    20% of the sharks/rays/skates
    10% of the bony fish
    Many insect groups
    57% of North American Plant Genera
    mosasaurs
    plesiosaurs
    pterosaurs
    Large marine Crocodiles (Deinosuchus etc)
    enantiornithine birds
    hesperornithiform birds
    Most N. American mersupials
    deltatheroidans

    [quote =Steve Miller]Therefore, something must have happened which effected only the species of dinosaurs. The ones who where very old as an own species, class or subclass or those who did have a huge body and extremities compared to their brain[/quote]

    How do you account for the wide diversity of taxa represented in this list??
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Hello, very well done, but any equation about an impact says nothing until it happens finally. You might know the movies going like, no the volcano does not erupt, not now, it's being all save around here.? Again, I meant the over the top animation of such impacts all of us are used to by today, more or less. There won't be explosives going off at all.

    Sure, the amount of energy will be huge, but earth was very voluminous as well. I think an impact was being seen merely a little puff.
    No one mentioned explosives. Lynx_Fox accurately expressed the violence of this type of impact. It is well known that the meteor threw a massive amount of material across the planet and there is evidence to prove it. If this was "merely a little puff," how do you account for the worldwide distribution of material that has been linked to this event? Sure the earth is "very voluminous," but compared with the meteorite, the rock and dirt it's composed of is not and was easily displaced by the high speed collision.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Folks had about the same thoughts back when the first atomic bombs where fired. It's say they thought it's like a chain reaction which could not be gotten under control again, ones the bomb went off. This has not happened.
    This analogy confuses me. I think you're trying to say that you cannot know for sure what it would look like until you see it. Of course. But one can make an educated guess based on available evidence, of which there is much. There's a pretty big hole in the ground, you know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    I still think the effect of a meteor impact will have killed all of life on earth, if it killed the dinosaurs. This was but of no substance since crocodiles are existent still today, for example..
    It has been mentioned several times throughout the thread that it was not only the dinosaurs that were effected.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Other species not only those being tiny or living in awkward places can be traced back even well before the dinosaurs. Right.
    What is an awkward place, and what point are you trying to make here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Therefore, something must have happened which effected only the species of dinosaurs. The ones who where very old as an own species, class or subclass or those who did have a huge body and extremities compared to their brain.
    This is the strangest attempt at the classification of dinosaurs I've ever heard.

    EDIT Sorry for the reiteration. Paleoichneum responded as I was typing.
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    Yes thanks for the list in particular. Do you think yourselves at times? A question only. No, but the extinction of life due to an impact of a meteor should have been globally. Why should a few species only have been effected by it?

    A global effect was not the case, hence there was not such an impact responsible for the demise of these species. Reasoning you know. I just see it pretty clear.

    Not only dinosaurs were effected yes, but even not all of the species. Got it?


    This is the strangest attempt at the classification of dinosaurs I've ever heard.
    I'm trying to take the exceptions from the rule into account, to getting to a result I can process with, rather than to repeat something someone else did. The one exception can prove the classification wrong. Coming from the world being a table or getting there wasn't something I do cope with.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Yes thanks for the list in particular. Do you think yourselves at times? A question only. No, but the extinction of life due to an impact of a meteor should have been globally. Why should a few species only have been effected by it?

    A global effect was not the case, hence there was not such an impact responsible for the demise of these species. Reasoning you know. I just see it pretty clear.

    Not only dinosaurs were effected yes, but even not all of the species. Got it?


    This is the strangest attempt at the classification of dinosaurs I've ever heard.
    I'm trying to take the exceptions from the rule into account, to getting to a result I can process with, rather than to repeat something someone else did. The one exception can prove the classification wrong. Coming from the world being a table or getting there wasn't something I do cope with.

    Steve
    Why is it global?

    And what do you mean FEW????? you seem to have missed the 60% of all life part of my post.

    this is close to 2/3s of all life killed in the event!
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    Now it's being very simple. The thing was, if not any dinosaur has been hit by a peace of the meteor on the head and I suppose this was true, such an impact has to have been killing all life on earth.

    This was true due to the chain of events. As I said, there where no explosives included in the game, as well as not any atomic radiation. The effect of the impact, furthermore, was said to have killed the dinosaurs. The effect was a huge dust cloud not allowing sunlight to get through. So the food resource of the dinosaurs was wiped off. Understand? This can only be the case when such an effect of an impact would have had killed any life on the planet, which has not been being the case. When not all life was killed by such an impact, an impact of an celestial body could not wipe out only a few species. If it didn't kill any species, it did not kill only one or a few species on earth.

    You know it was not of the dinosaurs primarily, but the foodstuff. Either, there was food so they lived on, or there was non food and any live was dying.

    Know Al Bundy? It's not Upper and Lower Uncton. Sorry, I don't know the original only the the translated version.

    Steve
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    I think what you are saying is that in impact is an all or nothing situation. The problem with that is that it is massively oversimplifying what happened 65.5 million years ago

    It was an impact which caused:

    dust
    sulpheric acid rain
    massive earthquakes
    Massive tsunamis (though to have been the largest waves to have left evidence in the geologic record)
    Possibly the trigger for the Deccan Trapps Volcanics

    It killed the apex species on land and in the ocean by disrupting the food chains

    It killed the vast majority of calcium dependent reef building organisms

    It killed the vast majority of the calcium dependent plankton groups

    The large portion of the dinosaurs probably starved du to lack of enough food. Those in north America may have been erdicated by gigantic tsunamis which traveled miles inland. Those in the area of the Deccan trapps were displaced and starved by the massive outpouring of basalt in the region which added large amounts of volcanic gasses and as to the area.

    Many different effects, two major disasters, all contributing to the extincttions.

    And all having large amounts of geologic evidence.

    Please provide an alternative cause which fits the evidence shown the geologic and paleontologic records.

    PS there is firm evidence for explosions caused by asteroids/comets. the most recent being the Tunguska blast which devastated a large region in Siberia in 1908.
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    Hello,

    generally, I think we haven't been coming so far to know for sure what has been happening. And I doubt this ever might be the case.

    But, when I was reading you post this time, you painted the image of a darkened world which no one did survive. This was not true.

    I'm not getting into some loop here. I was saying anything I wanted. It's comprehensible as well, I think.

    The all or nothing situation you mentioned would describe it best. As for my point of view, either one was right. There is being no doubt I have. The cause of the dinosaurs disappearing has to be well different.

    Steve
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    So explain why you disagree with professional theory. What is the alternative? It would be appreciated if you avoided condescending questions like "understand?" and "got it?" when you offer little but baseless speculation. In contrast, Paleoichneum is in such a position to imply that he is teaching, as he cites specific evidence supporting the commonly accepted extinction mechanism.
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    Ok I'm gonna try again, if you promise to try to be thinking about it yourself a little. Did you understand, the striking of the meteor had an effect, among many of course, which was said to have extinguished the species?

    Not primarily hit and kill? Not just like the comet, or whatsoever, hit and any effected species dropped down dead!!!? Alright?

    Steve
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    But, when I was reading you post this time, you painted the image of a darkened world which no one did survive. This was not true.
    Indeed, some life did survive, but I fail to see how you think his post says all life was destroyed.

    It's comprehensible as well, I think.
    It is comprehensible, but naive.

    The all or nothing situation you mentioned would describe it best. As for my point of view, either one was right. There is being no doubt I have. The cause of the dinosaurs disappearing has to be well different.
    You still haven't provided any alternative or any valid reasons why the most commonly accepted ideas are wrong other than that you don't think so.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Hi KALSTER,

    yes it might be naive. But, since life survived, just like you said, the (or an meteors ) impact ain't having crushed the food source, and, therefore, didn't wipe out the dinosaurs. Otherwise life hadn't survived. I don't see the problem here.

    As for providing an other clue to the issue, I provided one.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Hi KALSTER,

    yes it might be naive. But, since life survived, just like you said, the (or an meteors ) impact ain't having crushed the food source, and, therefore, didn't wipe out the dinosaurs. Otherwise life hadn't survived. I don't see the problem here.

    As for providing an other clue to the issue, I provided one.

    Steve
    There is more than one food source and a variety of diets. The impact did not destroy all food. Some animals eat seeds, carion, small plants, insects, fish, etc, etc. Not all of these food sources need have been destroyed by the aftermath. Not all animals could survive in the same climates. Different habitats were affected in different ways. You seem to be having a problem with accepting the possibility of a middle ground where not all food sources were destroyed and that different animals were affected in different ways.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
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    Very true! And not any beast has been hit by debris too. They survived the falling star, just as we do.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Ok I'm gonna try again, if you promise to try to be thinking about it yourself a little. Did you understand, the striking of the meteor had an effect, among many of course, which was said to have extinguished the species?

    Not primarily hit and kill? Not just like the comet, or whatsoever, hit and any effected species dropped down dead!!!? Alright?
    You state that the extinction was not a result of physical trauma due to falling debris, but the resulting dust cloud that destroyed available food sources. Do I understand? Yes, and I have understood this since childhood. My popup dinosaur books showed a meteorite crashing into the earth, while dinosaurs watched. The next page showed a big dust cloud, dead plants, and skinny, hungry dinosaurs with sad faces. I'm pretty sure I'm tracking on the concept. We all understand this elementary, commonly understood explanation and I suspect you know it. Since you persistsently parry the real questions and restate this most basic idea, I will assume that this is the limit of your understanding on the matter.

    [sarcasm]Good of you to condescend to teach us.[/sarcasm]
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    Well, actually I'm very happy about your reply. For clarification purpose, I don't had the idea of the dust cloud and the extinction of the food source. I heard about it somewhere just like you, though I didn't have a popup dinosaur book. I'm also not missing one.

    What I state truly was, the lack of the food source after a meteors impact, as the 'official' version goes, can not be the cause for the extinction of the dinosaurs and other species. Any form of life would die, if there was no food available.

    If you now want to tell the dust cloud only killed food the dinosaurs and vanished species needed to survive, I insist on they where being hit on the head by the meteors debris, rather.

    Could you please elaborate on what you do think the real question was I was parring, allegedly?

    To answer your sarcasm, I don't think you're being ready to be taught anything by me, by now, to be honest.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller

    What I state truly was, the lack of the food source after a meteors impact, as the 'official' version goes, can not be the cause for the extinction of the dinosaurs and other species. Any form of life would die, if there was no food available.
    You have been asked several times now to provide an option other then the "'official' version" as you put it.

    The fact that you put the term official in quotes is interesting.

    PLEASE don't keep us in the dark if not an impact what killed 60% of all life 65.5 million years ago??
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    If you now want to tell the dust cloud only killed food the dinosaurs and vanished species needed to survive, I insist on they where being hit on the head by the meteors debris, rather.
    Do you know what a food chain is?
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Paleoichneum,

    please read the other posts. If you would have been thinking a little, meanwhile you might have been got there yourself. What else?

    KALSTER,

    please, if you copy you need to paste. It makes no sense otherwise.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Paleoichneum,

    please read the other posts. If you would have been thinking a little, meanwhile you might have been got there yourself. What else?

    KALSTER,

    please, if you copy you need to paste. It makes no sense otherwise.

    Steve
    Steve, I have read each of your posts and never once have you articulated a theory which would explain the evidence presented. Rather you have consistently expressed disbelief for the theory which has been put firth and does fit the evidence.

    So please state what you think happened to kill 60% of all life on earth.
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    60%??? Jesus, you sure?

    No, but I didn't doubt an idea!!! Furthermore, I insisted on, for obvious reasons, a meteors impact can not have exterminated dinosaurs off earths surface. As I said, other possible reasons are not yet to come by since science was still about to be scratching on the surface of it all.

    We are not there yet. But due to the tremendous time dinosaurs have been around once, I think there was a good reason therefore to think they could not have been being capable of reproducing themselves. Not because of a senescence, sexually. But, rather, any of each animal had become just like its own species, genetically.

    What else could have happened, otherwise? A meteors impact clearly was an all or nothing situation, that no life on earth must have survived if it was a duly cause for the disappearance of species off earth at all. Again this wasn't true and must be left out of the equation, I think.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox
    The TV depictions probably don't overestimate the damage and effects at all: There's a gigantic crater, now filled in along the Southern Coast of the Bay of Campeche; There are glass fragments from molten and resolidified ejection of rock from the blast all over North America--all of which would have been glowing red and white as it rained fairy death to anything on the surface; there is the KT layer itself with it's iridium showing global distribution of fine particles which probably resulted in at least six months of near darkness; some models show that because the impact hit a high sulfur area there might have been sulfur aerosol added to the atmosphere which took years to "wash" out and would have reduced temperatures for decades; there would have been an enormous Tsunami hundreds of feet high that devastated the Gulf Coast for dozens of miles inland and inundated the coast of the Atlantic basin; there is evidence of simultaneous eruptions at the opposite side which is consistent with models which show possible crust rupture due to the convergence of seismic waves triggered by the impact resulting in a period of intense volcanism and all it's horrendous effects; there's high fern pollen counts after the KT period which is consistent with fern recolonizing a devastated landscape. There's absolutely no doubt that an impact could have brought wholesale ruin on the planet.

    Why didn't it kill everything? As one observation life in the winter hemisphere, and all the life in those ecosystems, would already be largely dormant during the worst dark months and chill following the impact.
    I didn't have an understanding of the devastation of the KT event. My theory might explain, or partially explain some of the other extinction events, although they might also all be related to catastrophic events, such as gargantuan volcanic eruptions, etc., but my theory certainly doesn't apply to the KT event that lead to the extinction of the dinosaurs, as I proposed.
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  49. #48  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    60%??? Jesus, you sure?

    No, but I didn't doubt an idea!!! Furthermore, I insisted on, for obvious reasons, a meteors impact can not have exterminated dinosaurs off earths surface. As I said, other possible reasons are not yet to come by since science was still about to be scratching on the surface of it all.

    We are not there yet. But due to the tremendous time dinosaurs have been around once, I think there was a good reason therefore to think they could not have been being capable of reproducing themselves. Not because of a senescence, sexually. But, rather, any of each animal had become just like its own species, genetically.

    What else could have happened, otherwise? A meteors impact clearly was an all or nothing situation, that no life on earth must have survived if it was a duly cause for the disappearance of species off earth at all. Again this wasn't true and must be left out of the equation, I think.

    Steve
    I have checked and the correct numbers for the extinction are ~50% of all genera present on the planet which equated to ~70% of all species.

    This involved much more then just the dinosaurs and you seem to completely ignore this fact.

    Yes the dinosaurs AS A GROUP were around for a long period of time, HOWEVER the genera and species involved in the event itself were around more much less time. THe assertion they were "too old" to reproduce is a completely false assertion. if it were the case we should not have modern echinoderms, arthropods, poriferans, etc, etc, etc... All these groups are far older then Dinosauria and survived multiple extinction events. Velvet worms are some of the oldest animals alive with ancestors traceable back to the Cambrian.

    "possible reasons are not yet to come by since science was still about to be scratching on the surface of it all. "

    We also have no evidence that pink unicorns didnt exist, but we don't take this a meaning they did.

    All the evidence so far supports the impact as, at least, a major component of the event if not hte main cause. IF new evidence is found which contests the impact then you can use this argument but at this point it is a hollow argument.

    Please clarify what exactly about an impact makes it an all or nothing event. As shown by the tunguska blast the size of the object dictates the area affected.
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    I won't clarify nothing now. It's being said in the postings. I think nature simply was, as ever, trying. Probably the planet was inhabited mainly by dinosaurs almost exclusively, therefore the numbers. The fact that I couldn't ignore, among others, was, only the onces with a torso --> limp --> brain volume being about in balance did survive, as species. Just like crocodiles, whereas others with a relatively small brain didn't.

    Ok, let me reiterate again (I just do think meanwhile we rather should try to spent time on finding out why some don't get the obvious, seemingly ). But, a meteors impact and the resulting dust cloud being the cause for the extinction of the food source had to have killed every live on earth, therefore. That's true since such an event can not be seen as the cause for the compleat disappearance of dinosaurs off of earths surface. Which was not true yet, as we know (a little scare tactic involved already).

    If only a smaller territory and smaller number of dinosaurs would have been effected or killed resp. by an impact, we wouldn't have been making such a hue of it.

    You can not have such a dust cloud locally!!! Even if, the dinos would move on to find other food sources (what a nonsense ).

    Steve

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    Hudson Bay up in Canada's Arctic, and the Chicxulub are the two large asteroid impact signatures that needs more scientists attention, as they're the result of the extra terristrial impact once upon a time.
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    The largest extinction event after the development of life forms easily able to fossilise was the Permian Triassic event. This is clearly associated with the Siberian Traps volcanic events. These were among the most terrible series of volcanic events to be recorded geologically on Planet Earth, and appear to be associated with a massive reduction in atmospheric oxygen. Most life on Earth died out.

    However, there are people who strongly believe that this event was also caused by an impact. One popular theory is that a massive impact struck in Antarctica, and the shock waves passing round the globe converged on Siberia, setting off the Siberian Traps vulcanism. There is even a site in Antarctica, under kilometres of ice, where a gravitational anomaly exists consistent with it being an impact site.

    The KT event is associated also with vulcanism - the Deccan Traps in India. Interestingly, once continental drift is taken into account, these can be shown to have been diametrically opposite the impact site at the time.

    Determining whether the impact or the vulcanism was the cause of the extinctions is more difficult. The Tambora Volcano which erupted in 1815 in Indonesia certainly sent dust clouds right round the planet, and caused what is known as the 'Year without a Summer' in 1816. This effect was global. Yet that eruption, massive though it was, was minimal compared to the Deccan Traps and Siberian Traps.

    It is entirely plausible that those two massive volcanic events both covered the entire planet in a dark cloud, screening out light, and causing world wide devastation. Most plants would die off, and all the larger animals. In addition, massive emissions of hydrogen sulfide would kill off those organisms that were susceptible.

    Of course, some animals would survive by eating dead vegetation, or by eating those animals that eat dead vegetation. However, such a food supply would not serve a large herbivore, or its predators. Some plants would survive since they would have resistant seeds or spores that would grown again when conditions improved.
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    Viewing dinosaurs from a smaller, weasely perspective, those fat eggs must have been a quite a prize. And I can't imagine dinosaurs effective at defending their egg caches from sneaky vermin-like species. Just one species with the right traits could have cleaned them up. Dash in and peck the eggs maybe?

    Suppose such a species ran rampant. Survivors would include those that kept their eggs in trees, or gave live birth, or were small and fast enough to oppose the threat.
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    Speaking of eggs, does anyone know if aquatic dinausaurs layed eggs on beaches like turtles and crocodiles, or did they lay eggs in the water?

    What I wonder is why sea dinausaurs died off while other sea animals apparently didnt (or is this assumtion even correct)?

    I heard that back then level of atmospheric oxygen were much much higher than they were now, maybe dinosaurs depended to a much higher degree to high concentrations of oxygens in the air, and that this impact/volcano thing might have reduced oxygen levels so that even dinausaurs in the sea might have died off even if less affected by conditions that prevailed on continent(s). Also bird ancestors survived so maybe small size or migration paterns were a factor?

    BTW do we know for certain that dinosaurs had scales?(instead of smooth amphibian skin, fur or feathers)
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    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo
    Speaking of eggs, does anyone know if aquatic dinausaurs layed eggs on beaches like turtles and crocodiles, or did they lay eggs in the water?

    What I wonder is why sea dinausaurs died off while other sea animals apparently didnt (or is this assumtion even correct)?

    I heard that back then level of atmospheric oxygen were much much higher than they were now, maybe dinosaurs depended to a much higher degree to high concentrations of oxygen in the air, and that this impact/volcano thing might have reduced oxygen levels so that even dinosaurs in the sea might have died off even if less affected by conditions that prevailed on continent(s). Also bird ancestors survived so maybe small size or migration patterns were a factor?

    BTW do we know for certain that dinosaurs had scales?(instead of smooth amphibian skin, fur or feathers)
    Fist thing first, just as a correction there were no aquatic dinosaurs. Pliosaurs plesiosaurs, ichthyosaurs, etc. split from the reptile group at a different point then the dinosaurs did.

    As for young, fossil evidence is that many of the groups bore live young, notably the ichthyosaurs of which several specimens have been found with the young being born when death occured.

    If you look at the levels of extinction, sea life actually had a much higher incidence of extinction then terrestrial life. This may be due to the impact being at least partly in the ocean and severely disrupting oceanic food chains.

    There seems to have been a full range from scales on most lizard hipped dinosaur groups through to feathers on many of the theropods. None would have had amphibian like skin for the reasons above, none were aquatic and none flew.
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    I just thought I'd add some information that I came by recently. The Nature of Things with David Suzuki is a science series that has been produced for what seems forever and is a Canadian national treasure in my opinion, but that isn't the point of my post. I was watching the most recent program on the origins of the world's oceans and one of the very interesting points that was made was the latest theory on the nature of prehistoric mass extinctions.

    Apparently the latest theory is that four of the five mass extinctions weren't caused by cataclysmic geological or extra terrestrial events, they were caused by massive algae growth in the world's oceans, followed by massive anaerobic bacteria growth, similar to the red tides seen on the west coast of North America, but on a global scale.

    The anaerobic bacteria actually consume sulphur, and one of the byproducts of their activity is the release of large quantities of hydrogen sulphide (?) gas. The algae would have killed most of the life in the oceans by consuming all the oxygen, and the release of the hydrogen sulphide gas by the anaerobic bacteria that followed resulted in mass extinctions in the air and on the land, both of plant and animal species.

    While I wasn't necessarily thinking of bacteria, this is exactly the sort of thing which I was thinking of in my op. And what especially interests me is what lead to the initial uncontrolled algae bloom in the world's oceans. One of the theories is that this was a result of global warming, something which might well apply to our present situation.

    What should be even more frightening to us, in my opinion, is the presence of what is called "The Blob" in the Gulf of Mexico (and I expect there are similar areas in other parts of the world's oceans). This is a large area of essentially dead ocean where algae feeding on runoff fertilizers transported to the Gulf of Mexico by the Mississippi river have bloomed and removed the oxygen from the water, creating what it seems to me are the perfect conditions for an explosion of anaerobic bacteria growth.

    And the point I am making is that, while both the algae and the anaerobic bacteria could be considered to be the highly successful species I hypothesized about in the op, I would further hypothesize that the initial algae bloom might well have been the result of the pollution of the world's oceans by some other highly successful species, or group of species, or climate change resulting from the activities of a highly successful species or group of species.

    The point being that we humans think we are unique in the history of Planet Earth, and very likely we are, but perhaps not to the extent that we think we are. We might well not be the first species to have within it's grasp the potential to destroy or severely disrupt the planet's ecosystems. Hopefully we are the first to have that potential and also have the wherewithal to at least mitigate the damage we have already done, and avoid further catastrophic damage.
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    Wasn't 'the blob' being a strange sound or noise in the ocean that no one know of what it was?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Miller
    Wasn't 'the blob' being a strange sound or noise in the ocean that no one know of what it was?

    Steve
    Seasick: Ocean Change and the Extinction of Life on Earth
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    I havent heard of this idea before, do you have any links to research papers on it?

    I can say that the K-T event was caused by an asteroid impact. see: Schulte, P. et al (5 March 2010). "The Chicxulub Asteroid Impact and Mass Extinction at the Cretaceous- Paleogene Boundary". Science 327 (5970): 1214 - 1218. doi:10.1126/science.1177265. http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/conten.../327/5970/1214.

    There is just not enough evidence to make any solid assumptions about the other events.
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    Hm.. Suppose a huge area of marshland suddenly got washed into the oceans by wave action. Would that be enough to feed an all-consuming "Blob"?

    The coal-bearing terraine where I am, apparently was once a tropical Pacific continent called "Wrangellia". It was largely built on coral reef which after sea level dropped a few meters, accumulated boggy lowlands vegetation. Then organic material just kept building faster than the sea could rise. Thus the coal. And zero fossils in this relatively young terraine because everything rotted down. Eventually Wrangellia did sink beneath the waves. Then I suppose the ooze of it might have slicked the seas catastrophically.

    Sorry for the unscientific term "ooze". I mean the oily black goop swamp soils are made of.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    I havent heard of this idea before, do you have any links to research papers on it?
    Best I can do without doing some real digging is refer you to The Nature of Things website.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    I can say that the K-T event was caused by an asteroid impact.
    Yes I think that has been pretty much established, so my initial thread title is inaccurate at best.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Hm.. Suppose a huge area of marshland suddenly got washed into the oceans by wave action. Would that be enough to feed an all-consuming "Blob"?

    The coal-bearing terraine where I am, apparently was once a tropical Pacific continent called "Wrangellia". It was largely built on coral reef which after sea level dropped a few meters, accumulated boggy lowlands vegetation. Then organic material just kept building faster than the sea could rise. Thus the coal. And zero fossils in this relatively young terraine because everything rotted down. Eventually Wrangellia did sink beneath the waves. Then I suppose the ooze of it might have slicked the seas catastrophically.
    Hmm, interesting but not totally what I understood Wrangellia to be. To my knowledge Wrangellia is a term for the various accreted terrains which have been impacted into the western edge of the North American Continent. The coal bearing formation in the Bellingham/Whatcom county area are all Paleocene/Eocene age deltaic swamps with plenty of interbedded layers of distinct fossils along with the coal layers and no associated coral reef deposits. Like modern mangrove swamps and other brackish water environs there would be no dead zones, rather there are complex diverse ecosystems thriving in the natural nutrient wash from the wetlands.
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    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo
    What I wonder is why sea dinausaurs died off while other sea animals apparently didnt (or is this assumtion even correct)?
    Well, I think the short answer is, they didn't all die off, some of them survived and evolved into birds. Birds are the direct descendants of dinosaurs. Now of course I don't know if there were already birds present at the time of the KT event, and those were what were the ancestors of our present species of birds, but regardless, birds are the descendants of dinosaurs, so in a very real way, the dinosaurs are still with us.

    A bit ot...
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  64. #63  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Hm.. Suppose a huge area of marshland suddenly got washed into the oceans by wave action. Would that be enough to feed an all-consuming "Blob"?

    The coal-bearing terraine where I am, apparently was once a tropical Pacific continent called "Wrangellia". It was largely built on coral reef which after sea level dropped a few meters, accumulated boggy lowlands vegetation. Then organic material just kept building faster than the sea could rise. Thus the coal. And zero fossils in this relatively young terraine because everything rotted down. Eventually Wrangellia did sink beneath the waves. Then I suppose the ooze of it might have slicked the seas catastrophically.
    Hmm, interesting but not totally what I understood Wrangellia to be. To my knowledge Wrangellia is a term for the various accreted terrains which have been impacted into the western edge of the North American Continent. The coal bearing formation in the Bellingham/Whatcom county area are all Paleocene/Eocene age deltaic swamps with plenty of interbedded layers of distinct fossils along with the coal layers and no associated coral reef deposits. Like modern mangrove swamps and other brackish water environs there would be no dead zones, rather there are complex diverse ecosystems thriving in the natural nutrient wash from the wetlands.
    Yeah I wondered about the coral origin also. It may be some one's idea for how such a large area got to be flat in the first place. I understand there were eroding mountains at one end... how and when in the continent's history I don't know. Did the plate cause the mountains or other way around, or both?

    Anyway I suggest this enormous marsh a likely suspect for sudden wash of nutrients into the oceans, if "The Blob" hypothesis has merit.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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  65. #64  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Hm.. Suppose a huge area of marshland suddenly got washed into the oceans by wave action. Would that be enough to feed an all-consuming "Blob"?

    The coal-bearing terraine where I am, apparently was once a tropical Pacific continent called "Wrangellia". It was largely built on coral reef which after sea level dropped a few meters, accumulated boggy lowlands vegetation. Then organic material just kept building faster than the sea could rise. Thus the coal. And zero fossils in this relatively young terraine because everything rotted down. Eventually Wrangellia did sink beneath the waves. Then I suppose the ooze of it might have slicked the seas catastrophically.
    Hmm, interesting but not totally what I understood Wrangellia to be. To my knowledge Wrangellia is a term for the various accreted terrains which have been impacted into the western edge of the North American Continent. The coal bearing formation in the Bellingham/Whatcom county area are all Paleocene/Eocene age deltaic swamps with plenty of interbedded layers of distinct fossils along with the coal layers and no associated coral reef deposits. Like modern mangrove swamps and other brackish water environs there would be no dead zones, rather there are complex diverse ecosystems thriving in the natural nutrient wash from the wetlands.
    Yeah I wondered about the coral origin also. It may be some one's idea for how such a large area got to be flat in the first place. I understand there were eroding mountains at one end... how and when in the continent's history I don't know. Did the plate cause the mountains or other way around, or both?
    Ahhhh, but it wasnt flat! It was as it is today, a subduction zone with mountain building and volcanic activity. The Farallon Plate was, and still is as the Juan de Fuca Plate, the cause of the subduction and the origin of many of the accreted terrains that make up the western edge of N.Am. now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Anyway I suggest this enormous marsh a likely suspect for sudden wash of nutrients into the oceans, if "The Blob" hypothesis has merit.
    As I already noted there are plenty of naturally occurring saltwater and brackish marshes and wetlands around the world to show us that the nutrient flows are balanced and thus will not cause "blob" effects. Its areas where there are unbalanced flows, such as the fertilizer saturated Mississippi River, that have only one major type of nutrient and no natural balancing agent. These are a possible cause of dead zones.
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    I'm sorry, this was what I meant.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bloop

    Steve
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  67. #66  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Yeah I wondered about the coral origin also. It may be some one's idea for how such a large area got to be flat in the first place. I understand there were eroding mountains at one end... how and when in the continent's history I don't know. Did the plate cause the mountains or other way around, or both?
    Ahhhh, but it wasnt flat! It was as it is today, a subduction zone with mountain building and volcanic activity. The Farallon Plate was, and still is as the Juan de Fuca Plate, the cause of the subduction and the origin of many of the accreted terrains that make up the western edge of N.Am. now.
    Well obviously there were substantial flat areas: the layers of mud, coal, sand. The coal says productive marshland, while the inorganic stuff says eroding mountains.

    There is coral sand at least in the Straight of Georgia. That suggests a foundation for flatland, since reef stops building at sea level. I had thought this coral helped build Wrangellia, where that continent was born in the Middle Pacific. Many ways I could be totally wrong about this. I'm basically suggesting the Great Barrier Reef grown enormous, then sea level drops to reveal it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum
    Quote Originally Posted by Pong
    Anyway I suggest this enormous marsh a likely suspect for sudden wash of nutrients into the oceans, if "The Blob" hypothesis has merit.
    As I already noted there are plenty of naturally occurring saltwater and brackish marshes and wetlands around the world to show us that the nutrient flows are balanced and thus will not cause "blob" effects. Its areas where there are unbalanced flows, such as the fertilizer saturated Mississippi River, that have only one major type of nutrient and no natural balancing agent. These are a possible cause of dead zones.
    If sea level rises sufficiently to wash over marshes, the ocean gets a sudden shot of nutrients. How big a shot depends on how wide the area covered, and the tidal action somewhat. So for the Blob scenario to work, I think, we want a huge and very consistent elevation of flatland.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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