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Re: dino extinction
Nick Longrich wrote:
> I sit and wonder how on earth the dinosaurs could have gone
>extinct, after all that success. And then when I'm done with that, I
>wonder how on earth mammals could have gone extinct. They did in one place
>in the world, New Zealand. New Zealand broke apart from the remains of
>Gondwana ~80 mya ago bearing a full cargo, and the only things that
>survived to modern times were ratites, geckos, the tuatara, frogs, etc.
>Now, what the HELL happened to all the mammals?
What about Bakker's theory of catastrophic disease? Has this been
discredited, or is it still in the running? Catastrophic diseases DO
emerge from time to time -- e.g., bubonic plague and Dutch Elm disease
-- and can easily be selective about who or what they attack. This may
very well be why New Zealand has no native mammals, and might also be
applied to dinos -- no?
By the way, David Drake (science fiction author) wrote a fun
little novel called Time Safari, about time-traveling dino hunters. In
it he postulates an extinction scenario which, while EXTREMELY
unlikely, works well within the story and should give readers of this
list a chuckle.