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RE: Burrowing/hibernating mammals have lower extinction risk



> From: owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu [mailto:owner-DINOSAUR@usc.edu] 
> On Behalf Of Richard W. Travsky
>
> >> I wonder if this could have been a factor at the K/Pg boundary?
> >>
> >> http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/595756
> >
> > Interesting!
> >
> > Robertson et al. (2004) highlight a burrowing habit as a likely 
> > survival trait in the first hours of the Cenozoic, while 
> Smith & Botha 
> > (2005) suggest burrowing therapsids (as organisms adapted 
> to dealing 
> > with periods of dysoxia and hypercapnia) may have had a selective 
> > advantage over non-burrowers at the P/Tr event.
> 
> So - any burrowing dinosaurs (excluding birds)?

"Zephyrosaurs" (a possible clade of hypsilophodont-grade ornithopods
containing Oryctodromeus, Zephyrosaurus, and Late Cretaceous Orodromeus) may
be burrowing dinosaurs: pretty secure for Orycto., inferred for the others.
Orodromeus is present in the Campanian; not yet known if members of this
group make it all the way to the boundary.

And again: although the Robertson et al. model discusses the initial wave o'
death, the thermal pulse is by no means the only (or perhaps even most
important) factor in the extinction event overall.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Email: tholtz@umd.edu   Phone: 301-405-4084
Office: Centreville 1216                        
Senior Lecturer, Vertebrate Paleontology
Dept. of Geology, University of Maryland
http://www.geol.umd.edu/~tholtz/
Fax: 301-314-9661               

Faculty Director, Earth, Life & Time Program, College Park Scholars
http://www.geol.umd.edu/~jmerck/eltsite/
Fax: 301-405-0796

Mailing Address:        Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
                        Department of Geology
                        Building 237, Room 1117
                        University of Maryland
                        College Park, MD 20742 USA