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View Diary: Hare Comes Peter Cottontail! (210 comments)

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  •  Thriving Rabbits? (1+ / 0-)
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    I know that we can tell that a species survived a period by finding its fossils in a later period's deposits. But how do we know that cynodonts "thrived" in a given period? Do we have enough fossil record to guess their populations, or the increase/decrease of it across a series of periods?

    Or do we just assume that these ancestors multiplied like rabbits? Have we found evidence of that gene in the fossil record? I doubt it.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 06:28:54 AM PDT

    •  Reproduction (3+ / 0-)
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      DocGonzo, bythesea, BYw

      rates are unknown. But the fossil record is chock full of synapsids, in places like the Karoo Basin they're so thick that if resurrected all at once, they would be heaped about and crawling over one another meters deep. Worldwide there as dimetrodons, gorgonopsions, dicynodonts and advanced rodent-like cynodonts aplenty -- including little guys like Thrinaxodon that made it past the PT extonction and well into the Triassic. That such ancient animals, some of small stature, are found ubiquitously throughout those eras strongly supports the idea that they were enormously successful, diverse, and well dsitributed. Same for small mammals proper through the Jurassic and Cretaceous, represented by plenty of diagnostic bits of skull and teeth unique to early mammals.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Sun Apr 12, 2009 at 06:43:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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