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Re: non-extinction

On Thu, 27 Apr 1995, Mike Styzen Shelf Expl, 588-4308 wrote:

> When the K/T boundary is discussed  there always seems to be a bifold
> division of the fauna and flora.  That is:  Things that went extinct
> and things that didn't.  The assumption seems to be that those that
> didn't went sailing happily through without a care.  And some groups
> may have done that, I don't know.  There is a third type to consider
> though and that is those who made it through but werent happy for a
> while.  The group of organisms I study are like that (nannoplankton). 
> At the K/T they were virtually extinct even the genera that made it
> through were not common for a long time.  In the early Paleocene the
> niche was even filled breifly by calcareous dinoflagellates.  Finally
> they recovered but the distribution of taxa was completely changed from
> what was around before the boundary.  
> What about the vertibrates that made it through? did they really sail
> right on by whatever happened as implied?  Or did they scrape by by the
> skin on their teeth like the nannos did?
> =========================================================================
>       Michael J. Styzen                   Phone:  (504) 588-4308
>       Shell Offshore Inc.                 Room:   OSS-2920           
>       P.O. Box 61933                      E-mail: mstyzen@shell.com
>       New Orleans LA  70161                
> =========================================================================
Good point.  The earliest Paleocene was a strange time indeed on land.  
There were no large plant eaters or meat eaters (though some crocodiles 
would be around stream banks).  The record of nannoplankton
is much better than that of the land fauna, so your work deserves much 
more attention than it is getting in this group.

To understand what happened to dinosaurs, it is essential to undersand 
what was happening in communities that have better data.