Animated Extinctions

I saw this animation posted to Imgur by user Waffurur, showing the five biggest mass extinction events in Earth’s history (as far as we know, really):

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Most people are familiar with the Cretacious-Tertiary mass extinction about 65 million years ago, which killed off the last of the dinosaurs. Well, except for birds, which are totally still dinosaurs.

Some people know about the Permian mass extinction, which left only about four percent of species alive. That’s also the one that finished off the trilobites, which is a bummer because they seem pretty cool.

"Kainops invius lateral and ventral" by Moussa Direct Ltd. (Moussa Direct Ltd. image archive) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

On the other hand, it also brought an end to the eurypterids—a/k/a sea scorpions that reached eight feet or more in length (but were generally harmless)… Continue reading


What I’m Reading, May 7, 2014

By California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation [Public domain], via Wikimedia CommonsU.N. Human Rights Chief: Stop Lethal Injection in U.S., Noa Yachot, ACLU Blog of Rights, May 2, 2014

The pain and suffering of Clayton Lockett during his gruesome execution in Oklahoma this week has been met with outrage around the world. Today the United Nations human rights chief said that Lockett’s botched execution may violate international law, and called for an immediate moratorium on the administration of the death penalty across the United States.

Should scientists ‘Jurassic-Park’ extinct species back to life? John D. Sutter, CNN, May 2, 2014 Continue reading