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The extinction of the Dinosaurs The first question that must be posed when trying to crack the mystery of the mass extinction is to ask throughout history were there any other occurences of this magnitude The answer is a resounding yes Altogether over time there has been about eight mass extinctions to large land dwelling vertebrates The most recent was about ten thousand years ago killing most of the giant mammals like mammoths mastodons super-large camels saber-toothed tigers and others Bakker 428 The second question is whether or not these mass extinctions follow a pattern Once again the answer is yes Every time a mass extinction occurs on the land ecosystem the oceanic system is hurt When the dinosaurs died many sea animals also died out Bakker 428-430 The final question to be asked is when these mass extinctions occur are both land and water animals affected and if so are they affected at the same point in time All saltwater animals suffered however freshwater creatures were left unaffected Plants on land did suffer but not nearly as much as the dinosaurs and other creatures that depended on them as a food sourceBakker 431 Since the time that the first dinosaur was discovered paleontologists have been pondering the demise of the dinosaurs Over a hundred theories have been produced to explain this mass extinction Psihoyos 255 The dinosaurs may have died because the weather got too hot the weather got too cold the weather got too dry the weather got too wet the weather became too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter the land became too hilly new kinds of plants evolved which poisoned all the dinosaurs new kinds of insects evolved which spread deadly diseases new kinds of mammals evolved which competed for food new kinds of animals evolved which ate all of the dinosaurs eggs a giant meteor
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