Dinosaurs were already in decline when the asteroid hit 66 million years ago, the study says

They are often described as coming out with a “bang” after a huge asteroid hit Earth 66 million years ago.

But a new study suggests that dinosaurs have come out with more than a “whine”.

Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences have studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells and say the animals were already in decline when the asteroid hit, possibly due to climate change.

“Our findings support a long-term decline in global dinosaur biodiversity before 66 million years ago, which likely set the stage for the mass extinction of non-avian dinosaurs in the Cretaceous,” the team wrote in their study. , published in PNAS.

They are often described as coming out with a “bang” after a huge asteroid hit Earth 66 million years ago. But a new study suggests that dinosaurs came out more with a “whine” than a bang

Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells and say the animals were already in decline when the asteroid hit.

Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells and say the animals were already in decline when the asteroid hit.

Dinosaurs ruled and dominated the Earth until about 66 million years ago.

A six-mile-wide asteroid called Chicxulub crashed into what is now Mexico, triggering a mass extinction that killed more than 75 percent of Earth’s species.

While previous studies have shown that a wide range of dinosaurs were on Earth shortly before the asteroid hit, it is unclear until now whether they were in their prime or already in decline.

Most of the data on the last days of the dinosaurs comes from North America, but for this study the researchers turned to documents in China.

The team studied over 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells from the Shanyang Basin in central China.  These fossils came from rock sequences, which the researchers were able to age using computer modeling

The team studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells from the Shanyang Basin in central China. These fossils came from rock sequences, which the researchers were able to age using computer modeling

Their findings indicate that there has been a decline in dinosaur diversity over the two-million-year period, with the 1,000 egg fossils belonging to just three species: Macroolithus yaotunensis, Elongatoolithus elongatus, and Stromatoolithus pinglingensis.

Their findings indicate that there has been a decline in dinosaur diversity over the two-million-year period, with the 1,000 egg fossils belonging to just three species: Macroolithus yaotunensis, Elongatoolithus elongatus, and Stromatoolithus pinglingensis.

The team studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells from the Shanyang Basin in central China.

These fossils came from rock sequences, which the researchers were able to age using computer modeling.

This allowed them to create a nearly two million-year timeline at the end of the Cretaceous period – the period just before extinction – which could then be compared to data from around the world.

Their findings indicate that there has been a decline in dinosaur diversity over the two-million-year period, with 1,000 egg fossils belonging to just three species: Macroolithus yaotunensis, Elongatoolithus elongatus, and Stromatoolithus pinglingensis.

While the reason for this decline leading to the asteroid remains unclear, researchers have several theories

While the reason for this decline leading to the asteroid remains unclear, researchers have several theories

The team studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells from the Shanyang Basin in central China

The team studied more than 1,000 fossilized dinosaur eggs and shells from the Shanyang Basin in central China

A few more dinosaur bones have been found in the region, showing that tyrannosaurus and sauropods also lived in the area around 66.4 and 68.2 million years ago.

“The small number of dinosaurs in Shanyang Basin and central China is far from the world pictured in Jurassic Park,” the team said in a statement.

While the reason for this decline leading to the asteroid remains unclear, researchers have several theories.

“This long-term worldwide decline in dinosaur diversity until the end of the Cretaceous period and the low number of dinosaur lineages over the past million years could be the result of known global climate fluctuations and massive volcanic eruptions, i.e. from the Deccan traps in India “, they suggest.

“These factors may have led to the instability of the entire ecosystem, thus making non-bird dinosaurs vulnerable to mass extinction coinciding with the asteroid impact.”

HOW THE DINOSAURS EXCLUDED ABOUT 66 MILLION YEARS AGO

Dinosaurs ruled and ruled the Earth some 66 million years ago, before they suddenly went extinct.

The Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event is the name given to this mass extinction.

For many years it was believed that climate change was destroying the food chain of huge reptiles.

In the 1980s, paleontologists discovered a layer of iridium.

This is a rare element on Earth but is found in large quantities in space.

When this was dated, it coincided precisely with the disappearance of the dinosaurs from the fossil record.

A decade later, scientists discovered the huge Chicxulub crater at the tip of Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula, which dates back to the period in question.

The scientific consensus now states that these two factors are linked and both were likely caused by a huge asteroid that crashed into Earth.

With the expected size and speed of impact, the collision would have caused a huge shock wave and likely triggered seismic activity.

The fallout would have created ash plumes that likely covered the entire planet and made it impossible for the dinosaurs to survive.

Other animals and plant species had a shorter time interval between generations which allowed them to survive.

There are many other theories as to what caused the famous animals to disappear.

One early theory was that small mammals ate dinosaur eggs and another proposes that toxic angiosperms (flowering plants) killed them.

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