Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Shotgunned From Space

According to the BBC, animals within the Arctic Circle were shotgunned from space by a nickel-iron meteorite airburst about 35,000 years ago. Eight Alaskan mammoth tusks and a bison skull from Siberia were found to have pockmarks that were magnetic and of extraterrestrial origin. Researchers were looking for evidence that something similar happened 13,000 years ago resulting in the Megafauna Extinction, the loss of many large and predatory mammal species in North America and around the world. (The cheetah is a survivor of the Megafauna Extinction. Only a family or two survived to reestablish the species.) However, the tusks and skull are three times older than they needed meaning that this is a separate event. Considering that bone and ivory tusks were pockmarked, it definitely had to hurt!


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