Welcome to my Metazoic site! This site discusses the existence of the creatures to come along after humans will be extinct. I first became interested in a world after man when I acquired my first copy of Dougal Dixon's After Man: A Zoology of the Future in 1992. However, I unwittingly created creatures that did not exist from the time I was about 8 years old. But it was after I obtained a copy of that book (now a collector's item) that I decided to take these same creatures I created as a child and make them more realistic in an evolutionary sense. Though it may be hard for a lot of us to grasp, humans will soon become extinct. One of the biggest factors of how this will happen is the current overpopulation rate. Which is why I don't contribute to the population. I created this world with little more than mammals fulfilling all ecological niches with the help of some friends. I even gave the era of the age after man a name, I called it the Metazoic, derived from the words for "After-era" (Meta, meaning after, and zoic meaning era). We are now in the Cenozoic era. To view all the animals I have created since I began this project, you can go to the "Meet the Mammals" section of this site. To discuss your own ideas about what you think will happen in the future world, and share your ideas with others, please feel free to leave a comment.
One more thing, some of you may find this site quite offensive, and you have a right to your own opinion. But please respect my right to have an opinion too. I'm not saying there is no GOD, I believe it was HIM who got the ball rolling. But I believe after that, evolution took over. There is so much more evidence of evolution than there is of creation. Even that going on right under our noses. Other than that, enjoy yourself and visit our many links.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Here's the link: http://dsc.discovery.com/news/2008/12/09/dinosaur-skull-sinus.html
Sinus-Laden Dino Skulls Reveal Hotheaded Life
Jennifer Viegas, Discovery News
Dec. 9, 2008 -- A fully fleshed out Tyrannosaurus rex head may have weighed more than 1,100 pounds, but much of that volume was filled with air, according to a new study that suggests all dinosaurs were airheads.
Scientists have discovered that dinos possessed more air cavities in their heads than was previously believed, including many sinuses -- the same cavities that can lead to sinus headaches and infections in people.
"Dinosaurs likely suffered from nasty sinus infections," co-author Lawrence Witmer told Discovery News.
"In fact, we have other evidence that these infections spread to their bones, so dinosaurs could have suffered from painful, pounding headaches at times," added Witmer, a professor of paleontology at Ohio University's College of Osteopathic Medicine.
He and colleague Ryan Ridgely CT scanned and 3-D imaged four dinosaur skulls: two fierce carnivores and two plant eaters. The meat eaters were T. rex and Majungasaurus, while the herbivores were represented by Panoplosaurus and Euoplocephalus, both ankylosaurian dinosaurs, which had armored bodies and short snouts.
The findings were recently published in The Anatomical Record.
"Scientists like myself tend to look at dinosaur brains, bones, eyeballs and such, but airway systems, essentially empty spaces in the skull, sort of slipped between the research cracks over the years and did not receive much attention," Witmer said.
The study revealed that predatory dinosaur heads featured large olfactory areas with an arching airway extending from the nostrils to the throat, along with the many sinus cavities. The air spaces made the skull bones hollow, similar to strong, yet lightweight, hollow beams used in construction work.
The analysis allowed the scientists to more accurately determine the weight of fleshed out dinosaur heads. Majungasaurus' head weighed around 70 pounds, but the 1,100-pound-plus head of T. rex took them aback.
"That's more than the combined weight of the whole starting lineup of the Cleveland Cavaliers," Witmer said.
The heads of the plant-eating dinosaurs were lighter, but they featured twisty corkscrewed air passageways that Witmer likened to "crazy straws," the swirly drinking straws favored by kids.
One function of this complex network of nasal cavities was heat transfer, the researchers believe, since blood vessels ran alongside their nasal passages, allowing air to pass over the moist surfaces, cooling the blood and therefore removing excess heat from their heads.
"Most big dinosaurs would have had a problem of being too hot," Witmer said. "We now think these were warm blooded animals. You can imagine them sitting out under the Cretaceous sun."
"They created shade, but didn't often find it," he added.
The scientists also believe the nasal passages acted as resonating chambers, giving each dino its own unique "voice." It's possible that armored dinosaurs, in particular, could recognize individuals based on their vocalizations alone.
CT scans of crocodiles and ostriches found similar -- although not quite so prominent -- head air spaces, adding to the evidence that these creatures are distantly related to dinosaurs. Their collective common ancestor must have passed down the trait.
Michael Ryan, coordinator of research and head of vertebrate paleontology at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, told Discovery News that Witmer's lab has "been the cutting edge for investigating what's going on inside of the fossil dinosaur skulls that we so painstakingly dig up."
"The new information about the convoluted nasal passages of ankylosaurs gives us the very first suggestion that these weird herbivorous dinosaurs may have had complex vocal patterns," Ryan said. "It turns out that the Late Cretaceous may have been as noisy as a frog pond during mating season, with the air being full of honks, chirps and squeaks."
Ryan added, "It's work like this that helps us to better understand these dinosaurs as once living animals."