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An early Miocene extinction in pelagic sharks


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Oxytropidoceras
Posted (edited)

Mysterious event nearly wiped out sharks 19 million years ago

By Yasemin Saplakoglu, Live Science, June 3, 2021

 

"It's unknown whether the ancient sharks died off in a single

day, weeks, years or even thousands of years."

 

The paper is:

 

Elizabeth C. Sibert and  Leah D. Rubin, 2021

An early Miocene extinction in pelagic sharks

Science  04 Jun 2021: Vol. 372, Issue 6546, pp. 1105-1107

DOI: 10.1126/science.aaz3549

 

Yours,


Paul H.

Edited by Oxytropidoceras
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  • Oxytropidoceras changed the title to An early Miocene extinction in pelagic sharks
Harry Pristis

I think this is sketchy research hyped by crappy science writing.

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Quote

Romain Vullo, a paleontologist with the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) at the Géosciences Rennes, in France, who was not part of the study, said the findings were surprising. They can't be explained by a known global climate event at the time, and the extinction isn't seen in the global fossil record of sharks, he told Live Science in an email.

Still, "further data from other regions in the world would be required to confirm the interpretation of the authors," he added.

 

Sibert and Rubin draw a major conclusion based on detailed study at two sites.  It seems overly presumptive, given the scope of their claims.

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FossilDAWG

I'm surprised this survived peer review.

 

Don

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Nineteen million years ago, world climates were warming and sea level was rising as a general trend.  Sharks might have adjusted to the changes and weren't frequenting the same areas.  I don't have the paper so I wonder which shark taxa are said to have died out.  A few of the apparently pelagic sharks of the time were Alopias (various species including the large A. grandis and A. palatasi), Parotodus, and Isurus retroflexus.  They have been proposed as pelagic forms because they are rare in nearshore deposits with modern Alopias species frequenting the open ocean or observed nearshore and open ocean.  Those sharks don't seem to have become any rarer in the early Miocene than before or after.

 

Jess

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