Have you ever wondered why land animals today are so small? Fossil fossils showed us that many dinosaurs were huge and massive monsters, and for millions of years they became only more. And modern mammals, on the contrary, are very small. Elephants are big, yes, but it's more like an exception. Who is guilty? Of course, people.
The fact is that people continue to kill large animals.
Why are all animals so small?
A new study conducted by a group of researchers from several American universities explained that people are the main reason why modern animals are so tiny compared to animals of the past. The study was published in Science.
“There were animals weighing more than 10 tons on Earth,” says Felisa Smith, a paleoecologist at the University of New Mexico and co-author of the study. “And today the biggest animal is an elephant, which weighs an average of three times less. And if they die, there will be no animals weighing more than 900 kilograms. And this is the maximum size. If you look at the average, the dimensions are much smaller. “
After the dinosaurs, such large creatures as woolly rhinoceroses, mastodons and giant sloths the size of an elephant wandered the earth. These examples of “megafauna” began to evaporate just at the same time, when the ancestors of people left Africa. Scientists associate large-scale extinction of large mammals and the appearance of ancestors of people with insatiable appetites.
What is sad, this trend is not going to be interrupted. Perhaps we will gradually destroy all animals and only the smallest of them will remain, to which a voracious person does not care.
“If we do not cope with this, there will be nothing more on the Earth than a cow,” Smith says. “It's depressing me.”