Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 18 Jan, 2011 11:07 pm
By the way, it is worth pointing out that ocean curents count for a lot, and that modern climate is no indicator of ancient climate. Most of Italy is as far north as you are Roswell, and in an age when there was no Gulf Stream bringing warm weather to western Europe, it shouldn't be surprising that there were mammoth there.

I think the great mystery which needs to be understood to make sense of climate change--both ancient and contemporary--is the influence of the seas and oceans.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 06:53 am
@Setanta,
Quote:
By the way, it is worth pointing out that ocean curents count for a lot,
Maybe before the Pliocene, but whenever a n expedition finds a fossil specimen, trust me, they are smart enough to know to bring in pollen specialits and microstratigraphy guys to determine the detailed context and environment of the fossil. When they find a mammoth in a peat bog in Italy, the pollen and microstratigraphy lets us know what the context is. Many more mammoths probably passed through and many died during the migration. Its just that conditions for fossilization were not as optimal as areas of melting permafrost where mammoths were routinely trapped in mud holes and died and were better preserved. (Its been said that there are 150 MILLION fossil mammoths in Beringea). Is that because they were exclusive to that environment or were they passing through on a migratory urge?.I submit its the latter.
We see many more mammoths in steppe climates because the fossilization was more easily accomplished there (mostly because of loess deposits or fluvial deposits). Forests had only cave drops, talus slopes or peat bogs wherein fossils could accumulate( or where landslides could bury an animal,. Most of the Appalachian, Floridian, and Ozarkian Mammoth fossils were found in these forest type environs . If Id look at these fossils from most of the Southern and Mid Atlantic, Id say that most mammoths lived in forests . Fact is, they passed in and through many environments and while many were obligate grazers, some were equalyy obligate browsers. SInce none of them were ruminants, their seasonal food needs would mean that theyd need some sort of winter range because prairies are crappy for nutrients when dormant. And since most nutrients in the tall grasses are in the crown, Id imagine that these grazers would have to migrate south to the short grass prairies where nutrients are stores in the stems near the surface. Passing through stands of thickets and forests would provide them
needed nutrients.

Most state geological surveys have produced overburden maps to show where piles of glacial drift, moraines, and outwash are deposited. Consequently, these maps also show the large areas that WERE NOT glaciated and, of these, whatareas were pretty much circum glacially derived or were climax forest. In theAppalachians through the Ozarks, the amounst of forested area was quite high. The only differences between pleistocene forests and recent climax forests was that most pleistocene forests contained as much pine and fir as our present canadian boreal forests. Oaks and Hickories were in the deep south then and only migrated into the northeast by the Dryas time.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 07:12 am
I wonder if you're making a distinction between mammoth and wooly mammoth. Are you suggestig that this is not a meaningful distinction?
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 08:15 am
@rosborne979,
rosborne979 wrote:
They are about to try cloning a Mammoth. If they succeed what should they do with it? If they can clone/breed a bunch of them should they be released into the wild (a cold climate similar to where their ancestors roamed)?

Any area that can still support a Musk Ox can probably support a few Mammoths, right?


OK, this was what i was responding to. Since Roswell specified mammoth living in a cold climate, i have been responding based on wooly mammoths. Specifically, i was pointing out that the environment which musk oxen exploit is considerably different from the environment which the wooly mammoth exploited.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 09:06 am
@Setanta,
I made a statement earlier that the several speices distinctions that separate meridionalis from primogeniue are, relatively minor and could relly be the same species. In the US, all the mammoth species lived pretty much together, whether in the polygon soils of the morainal tundras, or in the forests along the continental shelves and in the plateaus and in the south.
The only distintion I could serve is the one where fossilization conditions is markedly reduced in the forests and slope and plateus than in the polygon soil areas of the periglacial tundras and prairies.

Musk ox have been decimated by hunting so that most of the existing populations have been reintroduced. I dont have any idea where the musk ox "home range" even is. The Mammuts, Mastodons and toxodonts are all unquestionably African in origin. ANYWAY, I volunteered to take in a pair of mammoths(or any otjer megafauna except a glyptodont which would probably be made into a wallet if I didnt keep watch over some of my hillbilly neighbors)
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 11:07 am
So do you assert that wooly mammoths and "non-wooly" mammoths would have inhabited the same periglacial habitats?
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 12:40 pm
@Setanta,
pretty much. In the US this was not merely an assertion, It was factual and based on strong fossil evidence.
I really assert that these many species were merely the same species with different names for polymorphic forms.
Thats not uncommon in paleo. I have no reason to have anyon believe that but I always am suspicious of two fossils given two different species names hen the only differences are size or shape of tusks. They may be different species but Im just dubious.

WEVEN so, woolies and meridioals and trogs and Columbian and Imperials all occured in roughly the same ranges at the same times.
Theres a series of studies in a large compendium called "American Megafaunal Extinctions at the end of the Pleistocene". There are , therein, many arguments of the feeding patterns, migration, etc all leading up to great debates and arguments about what caused the deaths of the megafauna. Included is a mini "elephant killer" bolide that occured (and ushured in) the base of the Holocene. SO far, noones been able to find it, although , like the big nmeteorite that was found in the bottom of the Chesapeake Bay, it could be under 500 meters of sediment.

rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 07:20 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

pretty much. In the US this was not merely an assertion, It was factual and based on strong fossil evidence.
I really assert that these many species were merely the same species with different names for polymorphic forms.

Do you consider modern elephants to be the same species, just different polymorphic forms (from mammoths)?
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 09:11 pm
@rosborne979,
No, Elephants (loxodonta (A, and B)and elephas) and mammoths had a common ancestor.The several variations of mammoths are, IMHO possibly the same species because they dont really differ by much excepts size and since they occur many times together, they could have interbred. Well never know and Im only giving an opinion that would be considered heresy in some places(but not all) among folks that actually work on elephant evolution.
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 09:37 pm
@farmerman,
So mammoths could of been like grizzly bears, where the environment dictated some diversity within the species?
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 09:47 pm
@wayne,
good comparison. Barren Ground Grizzlies and Brownies are essentially the same species.
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Wed 19 Jan, 2011 10:01 pm
@farmerman,
I thought that's what you meant. Sounds reasonable to me, especially considering a species that was here just long enough to diversify like that.
That would go along well with thier being so widespread.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 06:45 am
@wayne,
I am still volunteering to take a pair off their hands and raise em in a loving family environment, Complete with alfalfa grass hay, lots of maple leaves and bark, and good wholsome TV
wayne
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 06:58 am
@farmerman,
Sounds like fun, hope they don't take to scratchin their backs on the eaves though.
I'd be worried they'd follow me to the bass pond n scare the fish.
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 09:46 am
If paleo humans really were the primary cause of megafauna extinction, and if we start bringing things back into a world where humans protect them rather than hunt them, I wonder if they will start breeding like rabbits and someday we'll get overrun with them Smile

These mammoths seem like a pretty versatile organism, able to adapt to a wide range of environments. Without humans to contend with, could they become a dominant member of the environment again?


Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 11:41 am
@rosborne979,
It is not certain that human predation alone extinguished the megafauna. It was very likely a combination of human and animal predation, climate change and the evolutionarily superior adaptation of other species who prospered in the climate change.

But don't discount humans automatically. As long as there are people like FM around, there will be predation--it will just be more organized and genteel.
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 03:23 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:
But don't discount humans automatically. As long as there are people like FM around, there will be predation--it will just be more organized and genteel.

I can see McMammoth burgers becoming the staple food of future teenagers.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 04:02 pm
@rosborne979,
You guys hurt me to the core.
A BACON DOUBLE Mc MEGA CHEESEBURGER. does have a ring to it.
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 04:08 pm
@farmerman,
Burger King may have to fund Mastodon cloning just to keep up with the new burger sensation.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Jan, 2011 04:10 pm
Maybe they should clone aurochs so they can milk 'em to make curds for the Mega-poutine . . .
 

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