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, February 16, 2010

Family of the Week: The Bear-Dogs

The family Cynovulpidae, is actually an extension of the modern day dog family (Canidae). Only unlike modern dogs, most of these animals are plantigrade walkers. That is they walk on their soles, like bears, rather than on their toes, like modern dogs. The only real throw-back to modern dog locomotion is Velocitherium. These animals are mostly fox-like in the head and face. The tail is usually long, sometimes as long as the head and body. The body is slender, in most species the legs are short. The eyes are almond-shaped, in most species, the ears are triangular. Some have large ears and some have small ears. The largest ears belong to the genus Orealopex. Much like modern canines, this is a widely varied family. Some are runners, some are surprise hunters. Some live in the tropics, and some live in the arctic. Some are tree-dwellers, some are most at home in the water. They range in size from Vulpella, which is less than 2 feet long in total length, to Daspletarctos, which is more than 10 feet long in total length and rules the Arctic of it's time. Most are group hunters, but some are loners, unlike modern dogs. The eyesight in most species is very good, the sense of smell is less than it is in modern dogs, but better than it is in most other Metazoic mammals.

Cynovulpes is perhaps the most intriguing species, it is a total scavenger. This species never hunts it's own food. Instead, it relies on the "kindness" of other hunters like Carnophalanger. Which is not really kindness! One wrong move with these carnivorous roos and the dogs would be doomed! Often they are the first at a Carnophalanger kill, sometimes even before the prey it's self is killed the dogs have begun to gather to steal their share. Since Carnophalanger are actually sloppy eaters, chunks of meat from their prey often gets thrown about like pies in a Hollywood food fight. This is what Cynovulpes waits for. They grab the chunks as quickly as they hit the ground. The dogs then take the chunks of meat to a nearby quiet spot to be consumed. As many as 20 dogs may be in a group. When the predator is done with getting it's fill is also when these dogs move in, to take whatever is left over from the kill. Cynovulpes and Carnophalanger are constant neighbors, living in close quarters. Usually the dogs are good about avoiding attacks from the kangaroos. But sometimes one can get unlucky and will be killed and eaten by the kangaroos.

Velocitherium is the exact opposite of Cynovulpes, it is a pure hunter, and is built for the run. These animals, like modern day cheetahs, are slenderly built with small heads and long legs, and a tail they use for balancing while running. Their top speeds can reach 75 MPH and they can keep it up for considerable distances. They are larger than cheetahs, and most of that speed is in the stride it's self. With this speed, they can very easily chase down deer, antelope, therapeds, and coursing rats. These are their common prey items. With thier speed and adaptations, they can keep up with every swerve their prey moves, grabbing the prey with semi-prehensile claws and killing the prey by clamping down on the spine.

Cynovulpids inhabit many corners of the world. There is even a species confined to New Zealand called Erinyes. This fox is small and hunts mostly birds, bats, mice and reptiles. Though it is somewhat larger than Vulpella. The coat of this species is quite thick, and tough to withstand sub-Antarctic winds and temperatures. Another species that is quite interesting, and a new addition if I say so myself to this family, is the river dogs (genus: Alveolycon). These are small, otter-like dogs. Actually closely related to modern day bush dogs, only they have gone a step further in their evolution. These little dogs live mostly in and around the river areas mostly of the Amazon. They hunt for fish, shrimp, crayfish and crabs. They may even tackle piranha in the water, ignoring the razor-sharp teeth and powerful jaws of the fish to get after the soft flesh. Alveolycon is also the only species of dog in the Metazoic that is active only at night. The eyes are cat-like to be able to see in murky water even on dark nights. To a degree, they also use a bit of echolocation under water. The sense of smell is poorer in this species than in other dogs, as it is not needed underwater to find prey. It is really only useful to find mates during the breeding season.

Cynovulpids are usually the predators in their range, but sometimes they can fall prey to some more stronger predators. As we have learned, Cynovulpes can sometimes fall prey to Carnophalanger. Some like Dendrocynus, can sometimes fall prey to Deinognathus. The smaller species may be taken by various Deinognathids, large mongooses, predatory pteropods, snakes, raptors, and even Barofelids. Ornaturus is sometimes careless and is often taken by snakes like anacondas. Some species, like Daspletarctos, has no natural enemies as adults. But does face some stiff competition for food with such species as Ictocamelus. Even Erinyes sometimes falls prey to the larger predatory weasels in it's range. Namely Ariadne, which is the largest predators on the island.


animaloverlord42 said...

how can a species be a pure predator, something that never scavenges? to be honest, i think that would be a major handicap, especially in scarcer environments. all vertabrate predators scavenge at times, it is useful and has less hastle, and helps survive in scarcer areas. i like some of your creatures, though. i have a high bet that canines, especially foxes would survive a human enduced extinction.

Timgal said...

Well, cheetahs never scavenge, neither do african wild dogs. So it's not totally unheard of for a predator to be full time hunters.

El Squibbonator said...

Cool! They sound like the hyenas of the metazoic!

Anonymous said...

When will you have a page on the Barofelids up? I'd like to know more about them?

Timgal said...

Squibbonator - basically they are, in areas where the "hyenas" (actually specialized weasels) are absent.

About Barofelids, I will be doing them soon. I am going in order down the checklist. Just keep watching! :)