Evolution News: Giant insects might reign if only there was

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Evolution News: Giant insects might reign if only there was

Postby Timothy Chase » Fri Oct 20, 2006 6:31 pm

I have been looking for sources of news in evolutionary biology, both in technical journals and at a more popular level.

One of the places I have found is:

RxPG News - Special Topics: Evolution
http://www.rxpgnews.com/evolution.shtml

They have a fair number of interesting pieces. One of their most recent stories is:

Giant insects might reign if only there was more oxygen in the air
Oct 12, 2006, 04:52
http://www.rxpgnews.com/specialtopics/e ... 5059.shtml

The delicate lady bug in your garden could be frighteningly large if only there was a greater concentration of oxygen in the air, a new study concludes. The study adds support to the theory that some insects were much larger during the late Paleozoic period because they had a much richer oxygen supply, said the study's lead author Alexander Kaiser.

May be of interest...
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Re: Evolution News: Giant insects might reign if only there

Postby Brian Jordan » Fri Oct 20, 2006 6:48 pm

Timothy Chase wrote:The delicate lady bug in your garden could be frighteningly large if only there was a greater concentration of oxygen in the air, a new study concludes. The study adds support to the theory that some insects were much larger during the late Paleozoic period because they had a much richer oxygen supply, said the study's lead author Alexander Kaiser.

May be of interest...

Indeed! Must tell Prof. McIntosh, because he says much the same. Well, the atmosphere was "thicker" rather than richer in oxygen, so that big butterflies' and giant pterodactyls' aerodynamics would work (see the wiki). Damned flood - if it hadn't thinned out the atmoshphere 4000 years ago, we might still see them around. Still, perhaps we're better off without them!

Brian
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Re: Evolution News: Giant insects might reign if only there

Postby Timothy Chase » Sat Oct 21, 2006 12:58 am

Oeditor wrote:Indeed! Must tell Prof. McIntosh, because he says much the same. Well, the atmosphere was "thicker" rather than richer in oxygen, so that big butterflies' and giant pterodactyls' aerodynamics would work (see the wiki). Damned flood - if it hadn't thinned out the atmoshphere 4000 years ago, we might still see them around. Still, perhaps we're better off without them!
Brian


Well, lets see:

Prior to the flood, you would have had the vapour canopy from which all that water came. Its weight would have exerted force upon the atmosphere, which in turn would have had reduced volume, thus increased atmospheric density, resulting in greater lifting power and increased oxygen density.

You may be on to something...
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Re: Evolution News: Giant insects might reign if only there

Postby Brian Jordan » Sat Oct 21, 2006 1:26 am

Timothy Chase wrote:
Oeditor wrote:
Prior to the flood, you would have had the vapour canopy from which all that water came. Its weight would have exerted force upon the atmosphere, which in turn would have had reduced volume, thus increased atmospheric density, resulting in greater lifting power and increased oxygen density.

You may be on to something...

Or not. The (professor's) argument presupposes a flood. I was just taking the piss - a much smaller event :-)

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