Cosmic impact to blame for death of mammoths; and not man

Often quoted as an early victim of man’s obsession with large streaks, the Mammoth once roamed large parts of the Northern hemisphere only to disappear without trace around 10,000 to 15,000 years ago.

I should point out that the majority of the anthropomorphic explanations were postulated by either environmentalists and/or vegetarians 🙂

Anyway, died out they did and there has always been a debate as to the reasons why. One theory, initially postulated by Geologists and Geo-climatologists is that an “event” caused a catastrophic (for the Mammoth) change to the climate and finally “did it in” for the modern elephants’ hirsute distant cousin.

Now they have the evidence.

In a study of rocks in Pennsylvania, South Carolina and (believe it or not) Syria; they have discovered melt-glass material dating back nearly 13,000 years, and formed at temperatures of 1,700 to 2,200 degrees Celsius.

This new data backs up the controversial Younger Dryas Boundary (YDB) hypothesis, which proposes that a cosmic impact took place at the onset of an unusual cold climatic period called the Younger Dryas. This was around the time of several major extinctions, including mammoths and giant ground sloths, and the disappearance of the widely distributed Clovis culture.

The sheer spread of the impacts suggest either a comet of meteorite rather than a single asteroid. In any case, it was good for homo sapiens. We do well in changing conditions.


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