Science

Fossil Trove answers Fast track recovery of Life after Extinction

In Colorado, a surprising trove of fossils has exposed the details of how plants evolved, and mammals grew more significant after the catastrophic event leading to the extinction of dinosaurs. The scientist and researchers have traced the thousands of specimens throughout one million years ago. It is just an eye-blink to the earth’s oldness. It was 66 million years ago, when a giant meteorite crashed into now, the Yucatan Peninsula of southern Mexico. It released scorching waves of heat and blocked the sun with aerosols for months. That’s what wiped out the three-quarters of species, including animals and plants, due to the shielding of sunlight. Somehow, life rolled back on the track. Land mammals evolved from the small ones into the broad spectrum of forms we come across today, including Homo sapiens.

Before the meteorite hit, the area was dominated by T-Rex and mammals weighing around 17 pounds. After the hit, following by the warming period, ferns covered the earth. The largest mammal was then a rat. 100,000years post the impact, the forest was home to palm trees. And the mammals had grown almost as big as before the crash. They weighted now that of a raccoon. 300,000years later, walnut tree family and plant-eater mammals were evolving together. Nearer to 700,000years, the record shows appearances of legume plants and mammals weighing 100pounds, most likely to be a wolf. But that is 100times heavier than the survived mammals during extinction.

Now the curious question is, how did they get bigger? The primary role played was the departure of the dinosaurs, leaving a vacuum ecological balance to be filled. Lyson, an expert from the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, mentioned that the simultaneous timing of evaluation of legume plants and mammals, leading to provide the right protein content to them, also played a masterstroke. Zhe-Xi Luo from the University of Chicago praised that the report was splendid for tying the records of temperature, plants, and mammals together to give out the perfect scenario.

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Bruce Townsend

I am a Ph.D. astrophysicist, Associate Editor, and science communicator, who professes physics and astronomy at various colleges. I’ve written, online, and in print, for Air & Space, Astronomy, Ars Technica, Discover, Drone360, Gizmodo, Popular Mechanics, and Washington.

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