View Full Version : Great beasts peppered from space

12-15-2007, 10:41 AM

Great beasts peppered from space

By Jonathan Amos
Science reporter, BBC News, San Francisco

Startling evidence has been found which shows mammoth and other great beasts from the last ice age were blasted with material that came from space.
Eight tusks dating to some 35,000 years ago all show signs of having being peppered with meteorite fragments.
The ancient remains come from Alaska, but researchers also have a Siberian bison skull with the same pockmarks.
The scientists released details of the discovery at a meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, US.
They painted a picture of a calamitous event over North America that may have severely knocked back the populations of some species.
Blast direction
"We think that there was probably an impact which exploded in the air that sent these particles flying into the animals," said Richard Firestone from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
"In the case of the bison, we know that it survived the impact because there's new bone growth around these marks."
http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44289000/jpg/_44289589_mammoth_bbc_203i.jpg Large quantities of mammoth tusk material are now in collections

And geoscience consultant Allen West added: "If the particles had gone through the skin, they may not have made it through to vital organs; but this material could certainly have blinded the animals and severely injured them."
The mammoth and bison remains all display small (about 2-3mm in size) perforations.
Raised, burnt surface rings trace the point of entry of high-velocity projectiles; and the punctures are on only one side, consistent with a blast coming from a single direction.
Viewed under an electron microscope, the embedded fragments appear to have exploded inside the tusk and bone, say the researchers. Shards have cut little channels.
The sunken pieces are also magnetic, and tests show them to have a high iron-nickel content, but to be depleted in titanium.
The ratios of different types of atoms in the fragments meant it was most unlikely they had originated on Earth, the team told the AGU meeting.
Magnetic hunt
The discovery follows on from the group's previous research which claimed a more recent space collision - some 13,000 years ago.
The researchers reported the discovery of sediment at more than 20 sites across North America that contained exotic materials: tiny spheres of glass and carbon, ultra-small specks of diamond and amounts of the rare element iridium that were too high to be terrestrial.
The scientists also found a black layer which, they argued, was the charcoal deposited by wildfires that swept the continent after the space object smashed into the Earth's atmosphere.
http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/shared/img/o.gif http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/img/v3/start_quote_rb.gif It was just a tiny magnet on a string, but very strong. It would swing over and stick firmly to these little dots http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/img/v3/end_quote_rb.gif

Allen West

"We had found evidence of particle impacts in chert, or flint, at a Clovis Indian site in Michigan," Dr Firestone said.
"So, we got the idea that if these impacts were in the chert, then they might likely also have occurred in large surfaces such as tusks; and we decided it was worth a shot to go look for them."
Allen West began the hunt at a mammoth tusk sale in his home state of Arizona.
He immediately found one tusk with the tell-tale pockmarks and asked the trading company if he could look through its entire collection. He sorted literally thousands of items.
"There are many things that can cause spots, such as algae, and there were a few of those; but I was only interested in the ones that were magnetic," he recalled. "It was just a tiny magnet on a string, but very strong. It would swing over and stick firmly to these little dots."
The search turned up a further seven ivory specimens of interest, together with the bison skull.
Further clues
But having gone out and tested the hypothesis of tusk impacts, and having apparently uncovered such items - the team was then astonished to find the animal remains were about 20,000 years older than had been anticipated.
The researchers are now considering a number of possibilities - one that could even tie the older remains to the younger event.
http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44289000/jpg/_44289611_embed_firestone_203.jpg The embedded particles have a high iron-nickel content

"People who collect these items today in Siberia and Alaska frequently find the tusks sticking out of the permafrost or eroding out of a riverbank," explained Mr West.
"Maybe, these were tusks from dead animals that were just exposed on the surface, so when this thing blew up in the atmosphere, it would have peppered them. The date could really be anywhere from 13,000 to 35-40,000 years ago."
The team believes there must still be peppered tusks out there that can be dated to 13,000 years ago, and the hope is that the AGU presentation will prompt museums and collectors to look through their archives.
"There should also be a layer of this same meteoritic material in the sedimentary record. It's probably very thin. If we can locate the right place and it hasn't been turbated, we should be able to find this layer; and it shouldn't be too different from the impact layer we found for the 13,000-year event," said Dr Firestone.
Neither proposed impact can yet be tied definitively to any craters - if there ever were any. The team also needs to explain how the bison and mammoth remains can show similar damage when they were widely separated geographically.
Past puzzle
The intriguing question is how space impacts might fit into the extinction story of the ice age beasts. The mammoth, their elephant cousins the mastodon, sabre-toothed tigers, some bears, and many other creatures all disappeared rapidly from the palaeo-record about 10,000 years ago.
Their loss has traditionally been put down to either climate change and/or the efficient hunting technologies adopted by migrating humans.
Could impacts have also weakened these populations?
http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/shared/img/o.gif ICE AGE PUZZLE
Large beast populations crashed 10,000 years ago
Includes mammoth, mastodon, sabre-toothed tigers, giant sloth
Scientists have several theories to explain the extinctions
Human hunters had adopted a deadly spear-point technology
Climate changes may have hastened animals' demise
Do space impacts also now need to be considered?

It might be just one more element to factor into what is a really complex picture, commented Dr Ian Barnes from Royal Holloway University of London, UK.
The British researcher studies the DNA of ancient animals to try to glean details of how their populations changed over time.
He said there were some interesting markers in the genetics of different creatures some 30,000 to 45,000 years ago - but it was extremely hard to draw firm conclusions.
"For us the difficulty is that we see patterns but we don't understand what the underlying process is; so it becomes difficult to ascribe causation," he explained.
"Just as in a modern crime scene, it's very difficult to piece all the evidence together and say precisely what was going on; which event led to any particular outcome."
But he added: "Certainly, you can't imagine it helped the animals having a large meteorite hit the Earth's atmosphere and pellet them with shot."
Jonathan.Amos-INTERNET@bbc.co.uk (Jonathan.Amos-INTERNET@bbc.co.uk)

12-15-2007, 01:59 PM
This event is described in the Kolbrin.


It is known, and the story comes down from ancient times, that there was not one creation but two, a creation and a re-creation. It is a fact known to the wise that the Earth was utterly destroyed once then reborn on a second wheel of creation.
At the time of the great destruction of Earth, God caused a dragon from out of Heaven to come and encompass her about. The dragon was frightful to behold, it lashed its tail, it breathed out fire and hot coals, and a great catastrophe was inflicted upon mankind. The body of the dragon was wreathed in a cold bright light and beneath, on the belly, was a ruddy hued glow, while behind it trailed a flowing tail of smoke. It spewed out cinders and hot stones and its breath was foul and stenchful, poisoning the nostrils of men. Its passage caused great thunderings and lightnings to rend the thick darkened sky, all Heaven and Earth being made hot. The seas were loosened from their cradles and rose up, pouring across the land. There was an awful, shrilling trumpeting which outpowered even the howling of the unleashed winds.
Men, stricken with terror, went mad at the awful sight in the Heavens. They were loosed from their senses and dashed about, crazed, not knowing what they did. The breath was sucked from their bodies and they were burnt with a strange ash.
Then it passed, leaving Earth enwrapped within a dark and glowering mantle which was ruddily lit up inside. The bowels of the Earth were torn open in great writhing upheavals and a howling whirlwind rent the mountains apart. The wrath of the sky-monster was loosed in the Heavens. It lashed about in flaming fury, roaring like a thousand thunders; it poured down fiery destruction amid a welter of thick black blood. So awesome was the fearfully aspected thing that the memory mercifully departed from man, his thoughts were smothered under a cloud of forgetfulness.
The Earth vomited forth great gusts of foul breath from awful mouths opening up in the midst of the land. The evil breath bit at the throat before it drove men mad and killed them. Those who did not die in this manner were smothered under a cloud of red dust and ashes, or were swallowed by the yawning mouths of Earth or crushed beneath crashing rocks.
The first sky-monster was joined by another which swallowed the tail of the one going before, but the two could not be seen at once. The sky-monster reigned and raged above Earth, doing battle to possess it, but the many bladed sword of God cut them in pieces, and their falling bodies enlarged the land and the sea.
In this manner the first Earth was destroyed by calamity descending from out of the skies. The vaults of Heaven had opened to bring forth monsters more fearsome than any that ever haunted the uneasy dreams of men.
Men and their dwelling places were gone, only sky boulders and red earth remained where once they were, but amidst all the desolation a few survived, for man is not easily destroyed. They crept out from caves and came down from the mountainsides. Their eyes were wild and their limbs trembled, their bodies shook and their tongues lacked control. Their faces were twisted and the skin hung loose on their bones. They were as maddened wild beasts driven into an enclosure before flames; they knew no law, being deprived of all the wisdom they once had and those who had guided them were gone.
The Earth, only true Altar of God, had offered up a sacrifice of life and sorrow to atone for the sins of mankind. Man had not sinned in deed but in the things he had failed to do. Man suffers not only for what he does but for what he fails to do. He is not chastised for making mistakes but for failing to recognize and rectify them.
Then the great canopy of dust and cloud which encompassed the Earth, enshrouding it in heavy darkness, was pierced by ruddy light, and the canopy swept down in great cloudbursts and raging storm waters. Cool moontears were shed for the distress of Earth and the woes of men.
When the light of the sun pierced the Earth's shroud, bathing the land in its revitalizing glory, the Earth again knew night and day, for there were now times of light and times of darkness. The smothering canopy rolled away and the vaults of Heaven became visible to man. The foul air was purified and new air clothed the reborn Earth, shielding her from the dark hostile void of Heaven.
The rainstorms ceased to beat upon the faces of the land and the waters stilled their turmoil. Earthquakes no longer tore the Earth open, nor was it burned and buried by hot rocks. The land masses were re-established in stability and solidity, standing firm in the midst of the surrounding waters. The oceans fell back to their assigned places and the land stood steady upon its foundations. The sun shone upon land and sea, and life was renewed upon the face of the Earth. Rain fell gently once more and clouds of fleece floated across dayskies.
The waters were purified, the sediment sank and life increased in abundance. Life was renewed, but it was different. Man survived, but he was not the same. The sun was not as it had been and a moon had been taken away. Man stood in the midst of renewal and regeneration. He looked up into the Heavens above in fear for the awful powers of destruction lurking there. Henceforth, the placid skies would hold a terrifying secret.
Man found the new Earth firm and the Heavens fixed. He rejoiced but also feared, for he lived in dread that the Heavens would again bring forth monsters and crash about him.
When men came forth from their hiding places and refuges, the world their fathers had known was gone forever. The face of the land was changed and Earth was littered with rocks and stones which had fallen when the structure of Heaven collapsed. One generation groped in the desolation and gloom, and as the thick darkness was dispelled its children believed they were witnessing a new creation. Time passed, memory dimmed and the record of evens was no longer clear. Generation followed generation and as the ages unfolded, new tongues and new tales replaced the old.

12-15-2007, 02:01 PM
In Mohawk Prophecy this is the second sun.


12-16-2007, 09:50 AM
who athats some crazy shit man