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 Definition The complete elimination of a species. [d] [e]
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 Workgroup categories Earth Sciences and Biology [Categories OK]
 Talk Archive none  English language variant Not specified

Hi folks, there appaers to be some concern about this article on the english wikipedia. Apparently there are some issues concerning the lack of italics in the nomenclature of the various genera, furthermore there appears to be misspelling of certain geological periods. And finally they seem to disagree with the story about Edmontosaurus. I say we turn the generic names italic and maybe somebody from the Earth Sciences workgroup can check the geological periods? Whether or not the Edmontosaurus story is correct I've got no idea, maybe someone can check this out too. I havent got too much time today, but I will look in to it when I do. Here's the link to the wikipedia discussion, you can find it in the subsection called Citizendium dinosaur articles. Thought I let you all know, cheers Jasper Wubs 06:59, 30 August 2007 (CDT)

Thanks Jasper Wubs, I took a quick look at the article and will "soon" work on it. A good start could be to clean parts which are not essential, as the example of the Edmontosaurus, in order to add them back later, when the stories will be checked on scientific literature. But see what Thomas Simmons says - he did most of the job here. Cheers, --Nereo Preto 10:25, 2 September 2007 (CDT)

Not sure I understand the bit about 'not essential'. Given that we have a reader friendly approach for CZ, with which the article is written, I think the use of such an example for the concept presented is essential and I think the Edmontosaurus-diet hypothesis does a good job of a specific example. We do have evidence that the Edmontosaurus did coexist with angiosperms and possibly consumed them (see Form, function and environments of the early angiosperms: merging extant phylogeny and ecophysiology with fossils. page 20) --Thomas Simmons 20:46, 2 September 2007 (CDT)

Thomas, thanks for the link, which is indeed a nice reference. However, what Feild and Arens say is that Dinosaurs and plant co-evolution is unlikely, which is at odds with the statement that Edmontosaurus died out for shortage of conifers. They give this reference: Barrett PM, Willis KJ. 2001. Did dinosaurs invent flowers? Dinosaurangiosperm coevolution revisited. Biology Reviews 76: 411–447. I'll check out soon. At the moment, however, either we find a reference for the extinction of the Edmontosaurus, or we drop the example.
More generally, as the topic is difficult to handle, I suggest we should let apart unnecessary sentences as examples, until we get citations for them which make us super-positive. Cheers for now --Nereo Preto 08:27, 3 September 2007 (CDT)

No, what it says is 'a theoretical example': we have not got more than supposition. Any statement of fact about a period 230 to 65 million years ago will be problematic. However, what example would you suggest since the concept of background extiction is the topic. This may be a language problem but without an example the concept is itself nothing more than supposition and an example is necessary. --Thomas Simmons 17:05, 3 September 2007 (CDT)

I was not aware that the WP is editing or influencing the editing here at the CZ. Can someone tell me if we have changed our policy here and edit with an eye to discussions and perceived merit on the WP? --Thomas Simmons 19:13, 3 September 2007 (CDT)

I agree we need an example to better explain the concept. I'll try to look for one which is well established and clear enough.
About WP influencing us, intresting point, and well taken. Good thread for the forum, you really should post there. In this specific case, however, who spotted the problem with Edmontosaurus did a service to us, and unless we get a good reference for this beast to have died out because of conifer shortage, we'd better keep it apart. Allow me some hours - I'll come back with the example. Ciao (we need this one!) --Nereo Preto 07:47, 4 September 2007 (CDT)
Ok, found the example from a textbook. Not the best one, though - if anyone could check out some literature, I'm sure there must be more impressive cases. What about mammooths? The Neanderthal man? Unfortunately, I'm not an expert in these things... --Nereo Preto 15:43, 4 September 2007 (CDT)

Hi Nereo,

I reworked the Background Extinction section for writng style. The other background extinctions might be the extinction of mega mammals during the first few thousand years of human habitation of the Americas, the extinction of many indigenous species of Australia and New Zealand--again by humans and their furry friends. Meantime, you can post on WP if you wish. I spent a few years over there dealing with some severely disturbed individuals and must decline your invitation. :-) --Thomas Simmons 23:13, 4 September 2007 (CDT)

Working on the mass extinction theories. more later. --Thomas Simmons 00:26, 5 September 2007 (CDT)

Mass extinctions

Great Thomas!

I'll be out for field work the rest of this week, but will check out once back. Before you continue, may i suggest this structure:

  • Mass extinctions
    • Ordovician
      • extinguished taxa and extention
      • possible causes
    • end-Permian
      • extinguished taxa and extention
      • possible causes
    • end-Triassic
      • extinguished taxa and extention
      • possible causes

...and so on. You substantially started this way, so it won't be a problem? --Nereo Preto 01:05, 5 September 2007 (CDT)

Look for the articles by Twitchett, Wignall, Erwin. These authors wrote a thon about mass extinctions, and high quality stuff. You may want add, here and there, chapters about recovery periods also. Very interesting for the Permo-Triassic! --Nereo Preto 01:07, 5 September 2007 (CDT)

Nereo, sounds like a plan. Do Twitchet, Wignall and Erwin have initials. Erwin at least is rather common. I will see what the national library holds in Wellington. Will go in early tomorrow before the Rugby.
Field work, where abouts? --Thomas Simmons 20:14, 5 September 2007 (CDT)

Oops, sorry...

Twitchett is Richard J. Twitchett. Check out: doi:10.1016/j.palaeo.2005.05.019.

Wignall is Paul B. Wignall. My favourite of his papers is "P.B. Wignall, 2001, Large igneous provinces and mass extinctions. Earth Sci. Rev. 53, pp. 1–33".

Finally, Erwin = Douglas H. Erwin. He wrote a famous book, check it out , e.g., here

Hope it helps - field work was in the Dolomites, winds up to 70 km/h and air T never between -10 and -3°C! I'm glad I'm back... --Nereo Preto 05:33, 8 September 2007 (CDT)

Erwin has been turning up everywhere. He has made a mark here.

The Dolomites. Seen pictures of them. Awesome. --Thomas Simmons 21:49, 8 September 2007 (CDT)


The article's title may simply be "Extinction", and not Extinction (geology) as it is now. If contrarians do not show up, I'll do the change within the next days. --Nereo Preto 05:02, 4 October 2007 (CDT)

Update: Extinction (geology) was moved to Extinction, which caused problems with the subpages and metadata template. Links will be fixed soon and the redirect page (i.e. Extinction (geology)) will be cancelled. --Nereo Preto 05:52, 7 October 2007 (CDT)