Skip to comments.Warming climate could make us all shrink
Posted on 02/24/2012 8:43:35 AM PST by BlackVeil
Researchers have uncovered a direct link between global temperatures and body size, leading them to conclude that future climate change could mean species getting smaller.
A team led by scientists from the University of Florida and the University of Nebraska followed the evolution of the earliest horses about 56 million years ago, and found that as temperatures increased, their body size decreased.
"Horses started out small, about the size of a small dog like a miniature schnauzer," says Jonathan Bloch, associate curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Florida Museum of Natural History.
"Whats surprising is that after they first appeared, they then became even smaller and then dramatically increased in size, and that exactly corresponds to the global warming event, followed by cooling. It had been known that mammals were small during that time and that it was warm, but we hadnt understood that temperature specifically was driving the evolution of body size."
The earliest-known horse, Sifrhippus, first appeared in North America during the 175,000-year Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, when increased concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and oceans caused average global temperatures to rise 10 to 20 degrees.
The team's traced its evolution from an estimated 12-pound animal to one the size of a domestic cat 130,000 years later. Over the following 45,000 years, it increased in size once again to reach 15 pounds.
"We could immediately see that the shifts in size of horses and temperature were mirror images of each other," says Ross Secord of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
The findings raise the obvious questtion of how animals might respond to future rapid climate change.
"Were seeing about a third of the mammals getting smaller and some of them getting a lot smaller, by as much as half of their original body size," says Secord.
(Excerpt) Read more at tgdaily.com ...
Does this mean that I’ll be able to fit into some of my old clothes again?
What a boatload of Bullshyt.
These stupid bastids completely elave out the fact that when man started Domesticating animals they bred horse to be any size they wanted them, They took the fastest and bred them to be fast, they took the strongest and bred them to be big and strong. They bred palomino’s and other for their beauty. They did the same thing with dogs.
According to Jimmy the Greek many slaveowners did the same thing, but he got fired for saying it.
This theory would be funny if it were not so stupid.
I thought cold water made me shrink...
what’s really scary is... the Cat Sized Horses apparently had SUVs 56 million years ago to eventually cause global warming even back then.
Smarter than Mr. Ed, I’d say.
Simple evolutionary advantage. The bigger the animal, the lower the surface area/mass ratio, no?. It can mean they are more resistant to cold. Warming wouldn’t make animals get smaller, it just shifts the evolutionary advantage a bit to where they can survive or even predomiante if the smaller size confers some other advantage, like being able to access more food sources, shelter and the ability to hide from or escape predators. OTOH, cold kills the little critters off.
I am 6 feet 4 inches tall. My child is predicted to be 10 centimeters shorter than me. Which is probably not bad since she is female.
“Warming climate could make us all shrink”
More HOGWASH from the “experts”.
History actually shows us the exact opposite.
Compare the stature of the native people of the far north with those of temperate climates.
Diet has a lot to do with it and a diet of walrus fat doesn’t do the same job as the abundant and varied foods more commonly available in warmer climes.
Finally a crisis where they won’t say “Women and children hit hardest.”
You know this is true by the fact that African ( very hot there) natives are much shorter than Alaskan ( cold area )natives./ sarc.
I must be taller than you. Because I can still rea
This got to Post #26 before someone threw George Costanza up there? We’re slipping people.
BS, they have exactly zero evidence that CO2 caused anything. The increased warming may have enabled increased the ability of the atmo and ocean to hold increased concentrations of CO2, thus causing the proliferation of plant life that in turn supported a greater population and variety of animal life.
These researchers might be advised to look at the rather steamy climate enjoyed by the dinosaurs. You can’t take just one element of an environment (temperature in this case) and use it to define all cases.
Horses the size of cats? Them cowboys was wearin’ spurs the size of dimes.
Horses the size of cats?
“We have a new record here at the Kentucky Derby where Gato Del Grande has won with a time of two days, three hours, seventeen minutes and twenty seconds.”
Horses the size of cats?
“Yippee-Ti-Yay Old Paint, it’s time to round up the cattle!”
“Forget it Festus.....look at me.....look at my size in comparison to those cows.....what do you want me to do?.....bite their legs?.....”
Horses the size of cats?
THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Half a foor, half a foot,
Half a foot onward,