Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Comets Over Canada...Or Not?

I have written previously about Allen West's theory re a comet or other extraterrestrial object exploding over Canada 13,000 years ago and bringing an end to the Clovis Culture, triggering the Younger Dryas, and causing the extinction of the mammoth.
Well, science marches on. A new paper (Paleoindian demography and the extraterrestrial impact hypothesis) has appeared testing the first of these three conclusions:

The impact is also claimed to have caused major cultural changes and population decline among the Paleoindians. Here, we report a study in which ≈1,500 radiocarbon dates from archaeological sites in Canada and the United States were used to test the hypothesis that the ET resulted in population decline among the Paleoindians.

[...]

The results of the analyses were not consistent with the predictions of extraterrestrial impact hypothesis. No evidence of a population decline among the Paleoindians at 12,900 ± 100 calBP was found. Thus, minimally, the study suggests the extraterrestrial impact hypothesis should be amended.

Ah well. Pity. I am partial to any theories that involve stuff exploding in the sky.

And I know nobody reads these sciency-type posts. I still enjoy doing them, especially when writing about politics starts to make me feel unclean.

H/t Afarensis.

3 comments:

Boris said...

Hey! I read them!

JAWL said...

I had a thought that comets or other hunks of cosmos junk that bombards the various planets, stars etc. might contain some form of DNA life forming processes.

And such a life forming piece of shrapnel that crashed in northern Alberta landed in the tailing pond with 350 decaying ducks.

Then sometime in the not so distant future a new species of fearsome fotry foot foul emerges from the poisonous pools that has an insatiable appetite for bitumen ...

But I guess your fact finding post killed that theory.

Dumoustier said...

I read them too, because, like this post, it's often something I've never heard of -- and probably wouldn't, if you hadn't posted it.

And I share your disappointment. It would be amusing if the history of life on Earth, all those mass extinctions, were the work of some alien race lightyears away flinging rocks at us.

(Large comet smacks into the eastern edge of Gondwonaland. Dust and debris blanket the planet. A multi-limbed blue being lifts its middle eye from the long-range viewer.)

++There, that should do it.++

(Several hundred millenia pass.)

++Drat! The place is infested again! Mass-Shifter, prepare another projectile.++