The Future Sixth Mass Extinction

So I’m slightly mildly more than a little concerned for our planet Earth. I mean, I always have been in the past but that worry has increased quite a bit last night.

I read an article reporting thousands of dead squids washing up on the shores of the Santa Maria island in Costa Rica. So that’s already devastating and shocking enough. Have you guys seen the pictures? You’d think ‘thousands’ is exaggerating but, man, they were not kidding. You can hardly tell the individual squids apart because they’re all squished together.

It’s more alarming though because a few weeks ago, there was another article stating that hundreds of dead sea lions had also washed up in northern Chile. Now it’s already a huge problem – two different species all dying and washing up somewhere. Obviously, there’s something in the waters.

In many of the articles, both situations seem to share the speculation of rising sea temperatures being the reason for these mass deaths. In addition, some articles regarding the dead squids have reported that it may also be due to low oxygen levels in the sea (there were other man-related reasons given, but I’m focusing on these two natural ones).

For me, this sounds familiar. As a paleontologist enthusiast, I’ve spent some time learning about the land before time (joke). To some people, this may not be news, but here goes anyway.

So we’ve learned about the great dinosaur extinction that pretty much wiped out every life organism except for the hardy mammals and others. But in addition to that, there has been four other mass extinctions prior to that one. Three of them occurred before the Triassic era (when dinosaurs first came), and one of them occurred during the dinosaur age (between the Triassic and Jurassic era). And obviously, the fifth one being the death of all dinosaurs (sadly).

Now, I don’t know much about the two extinctions regarding dinosaurs, but I do know that the three mass extinctions before the Triassic era had to do with the sea and oxygen levels. One of them, the Permian (right before the Triassic era) mass extinction was one of THE largest mass extinctions. It’s even been nicknamed “The Great Dying” because an overwhelming 96% of life died out in that extinction. All of the life we have today comes from the remaining 4% of life that survived.

The reasons for those three mass extinctions had numerous different reasons, such as volcanic activity, melting of ice glaciers, etc. But all of them also involved a drop in oxygen levels or a change in sea temperature. These extinctions didn’t happen suddenly at once like the asteroid demolishing the dinosaur race, they happened slowly over time. But they happened fast enough that animals couldn’t adapt over generations and caused them to die out.

It’s essentially what’s happening now. Climate change today is quickly (in universe time, it’s pretty quick) changing the earth and repeating the same common theme that all the mass extinctions had. I’m not saying we are in the middle of another mass extinction… but it sure as heck seems like we’re about to be in one. Not to mention, paleontologists who have studied the mass extinctions more in depth have stated that the earth will inevitably experience a 6th mass extinction at some point. And based on how the world is changing over the years, I’m not that surprised. Of course, not a super fast extinction, but a slow subtle one.

Okay, it sounds like I’m one of those people running around claiming “IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD,” but I’m not getting to that point haha I’m merely sharing my thoughts on this. I don’t have anyone close to me I can talk about seriously regarding this matter so might as well talk to myself about it on the blog! Also, have you seen the photo of the starving polar bear in the Arctic due to the rapidly melting ice? It’s really saddening.

Any who, thought of the day!


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