Primeval 12 – Permian Period

The climate in the Permian Period was quite varied. At the start of the Permian, the Earth was still in an Ice Age, which began in the late Carboniferous Period. Glaciers receded around the mid-Permian period as the climate gradually warmed, drying the continent’s interiors. Read more →

Primeval 14 – Jurassic Period

The Jurassic Period is a geologic period and system that extends from 201 to 145 million years ago, from the end of the Triassic to the beginning of the Cretaceous. The start of the period was marked by the major Triassic–Jurassic extinction event. Two other extinction events occurred during the period: the Toarcian extinction in the Early Jurassic, and the Late Tithonian event at the end; however, neither event ranks among the ‘Big Five’ mass extinctions. Read more →

Primeval 15 – Cretaceous Period

The Cretaceous was a period with a relatively warm climate, resulting in high inland sea levels and creating numerous shallow inland seas. These oceans and seas were populated with now-extinct marine reptiles, ammonites and rudists, while dinosaurs continued to dominate on land. At the same time, new groups of mammals and birds, as well as flowering plants, appeared. During the Cretaceous, the super-continent of Pangaea completed its tectonic breakup into present day continents, although their positions were substantially different at the time. As the Atlantic Ocean widened, the convergent-margin mountain ranges that had begun during the Jurassic continued in the North American Cordillera, as the Nevadan mountain building was followed by the Sevier and Laramide mountain building. Read more →

Primeval 16 – K–Pg Extinction Event

The end of the Cretaceous was one of the largest extinction events in the existence of the Earth, the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, also called the K-T Extinction or K–Pg Extinction. In terms of severity, the event eliminated a vast number of species. Based on marine fossils, it is estimated that 75% or more of all species were wiped out by the K–Pg extinction. Read more →

Primeval 17 – Asteroid Mining

The length of time taken for the K-Pg Extinction to occur is a controversial issue, because some theories about the extinction’s causes require a rapid extinction over a relatively short period of a few thousand years, while others require longer periods. The issue is difficult to resolve because of the Signor–Lipps effect; that is, the fossil record is so incomplete that most extinct species probably died out long after the most recent fossil that has been found. Read more →

Primeval 18 – Dinosauroids

Asteroid mining is quickly becoming a reality in the early 21st century, but the idea isn’t new. The first mention of asteroid mining in science fiction is probably Garrett P. Serviss’ story Edison’s Conquest of Mars, New York Evening Journal in 1898, but are we 65 million years late to the Asteroid mining party? Read more →

Primeval 19 – Paleocene Epoch

The K-Pg Extinction event marked a change from the Cretaceous to Paleogene Period, and also marked the beginning of the Paleocene epoch. The Paleogene is a geologic period that began 66 and ended 23 million years ago and consists of the Paleocene, Eocene, and Oligocene Epochs. The Paleocene is a geologic epoch that lasted from about 66 to 56 million years ago. As with many geologic periods, the strata that define the epoch’s beginning and end are well identified, but the exact ages remain uncertain. Read more →

Primeval 20 – Eocene Epoch

The Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) also called the Eocene Thermal Maximum 1 (ETM-1) refers to a climate event that began at the beginning of the Eocene epoch. The absolute age and duration of the event remain uncertain, but are thought to be close to 55.8 million years ago and about 170,000 years long. The PETM has become a focal point of considerable geoscientific research because it provides the best known past analog by which to understand impacts of global warming and massive carbon input to the ocean and atmosphere today, including ocean acidification. Read more →