Yet Another Dinosaur Extinction Theory: Bugs
A press release from Oregon State claims that insects may have finished off the dinosaurs. Two main reasons were given for this hypothesis: (1) the extinction coincides with the rise of flowering plants and their pollinators, and (2) the impact theory has serious problems.
“There are serious problems with the sudden impact theories of dinosaur extinction, not the least of which is that dinosaurs declined and disappeared over a period of hundreds of thousands, or even millions of years,” said George Poinar Jr., a courtesy professor of zoology at Oregon State University. “That time frame is just not consistent with the effects of an asteroid impact. But competition with insects, emerging new diseases and the spread of flowering plants over very long periods of time is perfectly compatible with everything we know about dinosaur extinction.”
The theory actually proposes a brew of toxic effects, including geological catastrophes like impacts and volcanoes, mixed in with new diseases from biting insects. George and Roberta Poinar have found evidence of “leishmania, malaria, intestinal parasites, arboviruses and other pathogens” in dinosaur coprolites (fossil dung) and in the guts of amber-entombed insects. They suggest that waves of epidemics caused dinosaur extinction over a long period of time.
Rather than a single event, therefore, the Poinars propose that “The confluence of new insect-spread diseases, loss of traditional food sources, and competition for plants by insect pests could all have provided a lingering, debilitating condition that dinosaurs were ultimately unable to overcome.”
Science Daily posted the hypothesis with a picture of a tick encased in amber.
One would think that the highly-versatile and adaptable dinosaurs would have enjoyed some nice salad after millions of years of pine cones and ferns. Maybe they couldn’t get used to the taste of broccoli. Now that 25 years of animations of horrific space bombardments have to go out the window, it’s open season for you to propose your own theory about dinosaur extinction. Add to the historic list: diarrhea, cosmic rays, poached eggs, tobacco (Gary Larson), asteroids, and not listening to Mom (see ARN for more ideas).
All these hypotheses fail to explain why so many contemporary creatures avoided the extinction – including some good-size mammals and birds (the reputed dinosaurs of today). Remember that dinosaurs came in a wide variety of sizes. They roamed the entire planet – including Antarctica (12/12/2007). Whatever killed them off must have been both global and very selective.
Since we now know that soft tissue, proteins and maybe even blood has been preserved in some dinosaurs, indicating that they lived much more recently than assumed by evolutionists, put the pieces together. Maybe humans killed off the remaining ones after the Flood. Professor Noah from the University of Ark claims that this hypothesis is “perfectly compatible with everything we know about dinosaur extinction.”