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Lethal - Mass Extinction

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1102671.  Sun Nov 23, 2014 4:20 pm Reply with quote

I thought I would bring to people's attention another hypothesis about the shortest mass extinction. I heard this via RadioLab (an excellent podcast) in their live show: Apocalyptical.

It talks about scientist's hypothesis (Jay Molash, being one of them and the main speaker) which suggests that the mass extinction of the dinosaurs happened within a two hour period, contrary to the 50,000 year period I was taught. The hypothesis is beautiful and it starts from around 2 minute 30 seconds in the podcast and it sounds worthy of thought.

1102678.  Sun Nov 23, 2014 5:43 pm Reply with quote

Welcome FilosophyFox - interesting thought there. Can you find us a link to the podcast?

1102708.  Mon Nov 24, 2014 7:11 am Reply with quote

This particular podcast can be found via

It starts from around 1:50

1102723.  Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:44 am Reply with quote

My problem with that theory, or at least how the theory is put forward, is that not everything died on that day. Lizards, mammals, fish, crocodiles, and even some dinosaurs/birds survived. Yes, a lot of things died, but if it is as they said that no place was safe to hide and the Earth turned into a pizza oven, not even lizards and mammals, etc. would survive.

I don't doubt that there was a meteor impact and all that, I just doubt that the Earth was turned into Hell in a matter of hours.

EDIT: Nevermind, I spoke too soon. I'm watching the video of the show and it really seemed like they were done with the whole thing and moving on to a new segment.

1103218.  Fri Nov 28, 2014 6:20 am Reply with quote

Yeah, the show was in three parts and so moved on which is sometimes a bit disappointing with that podcast. As when you start feeling a subject they move on.

But they did put forward a reason why not everything died: that in order to survive you didn't need to be that far underground due to earth being an excellent insulator. So for mammals which were burrowed it would have been fine (maybe a bit uncomfortable). Also well as if sea dwelling creatures were far enough down then they wouldn't have been effected (I can't remember how far down they suggested).

I need to re-listen to it to remember my objections to their suggestion. I just thought that is sounded rather beautiful (in a horrible sort of way).

1103220.  Fri Nov 28, 2014 6:29 am Reply with quote

Yeah, I wrote my comment right before they got to why some land-dwelling animals survived, but earlier in the podcast they said "No dinosaurs survived. There were none in any caves or such." And fair enough, when they said caves I imagined a rock cave, and a long-necked herbivore in one of them would be a ridiculous sight, to be sure. They just went a bit too heavy on the "EVERYTHING DIED!" for a long time. The video was great with the dinosaur puppets and images, though. My only objection is that I'm sure I saw a toy of a Dimetrodon several time, which is first of all not a dinosaur, and which had been dead for several hundred million years anyway.


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