Wednesday , January 27 2021

There is a fossil cemetery; associated with the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs, the study says t



According to a study published on Monday, the team of palaeontologists from the University of Kansas and Manchester University discovered the "motherlode of animal and fish fossils that have kept them perfect".

The effect of the asteroid, which created the Chicxulub crater under the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, was one of the most devastating events in Earth's history, extinguishing 75% of the planet's animal and plant species.

The destruction caused by the effect included massive surges such as tsunami and "ejecta" – a flow of rocks, such as fine sand and small glass beads – the report said.

"A tsunami would have taken at least 17 hours or more to reach the site of the crater, but seismic waves – and a subsequent surge – would have arrived in tens of minutes," said Robert DePalma, the report's lead author.

On the fossil site – Tanis in North Hell Creek Formation – the surge after "a comfortable mass of freshwater fish, terrestrial vertebrates, trees, branches, trunks, marine ammonites and other marine creatures," DePalma, a doctoral student told the University of Kansas.

"No other site has a similar record," said DePalma. "And this special event has been tied directly to all of us – to all mammals on Earth, in fact. As this essentially inherits the planet, t nothing was the same after that effect, it became a planet of mammals rather than the planet of dinosaurs. "

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Phil Manning, a palaeontologist from Manchester University and co-author of the study, was to find a "unique geological and palaeontological treasure" containing the first direct evidence of larger organisms killed by the effect of Chicxulub.

The sediments, the fossils and the associated effect debris make this an important site for those who are studying the extinction event and helped to erase the t dinosaurs, "he said.

However, prominent palaeontologists were not part of the study sounded our note of caution.

"The geological interpretation seems very credible to me, and the fish fossils seem to record a catastrophic incident on the asteroid effect or close to it. But the dinosaur aspect of the story is not so clear to me, "Stephen Brusatte, a lecturer and researcher in paleontology at Edinburgh University, told CNN.

"The only dinosaur fossil mentioned in the paper is partial hip bone," he added. "I hope there are other dinosaur fossils on the site, and I look forward to hearing more about them. I hope this has not been exaggerated. It would be amazing if everything was true."

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Paul Upchurch, a teacher of palaeontology at University College London, also had some doubts about the study's findings.

"It's nice to have a glimpse of what happened in one particular part of the world – it certainly adds to the evidence of how destructive the effect was, even hundreds or thousands. T miles away, "he told CNN.

However, he added that if the ejecta came from a different effect, or perhaps much less, at a different time and place, or that the ejecta comes from Chicxulub but stays in the water system for a long time afterwards, " then the fish etc may have died for some other reason – something less spectacular and more local – and it had little to do with the Chicxulub effect. "


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