Recent studies have had scientists suggesting that we are currently in the middle of a sixth mass extinction event as animal species throughout the world continue to suffer from “biological annihilation,” but researchers have come up with some tips that may help humans to survive an apocalyptic extinction event.
As Business Insider report, scientists believe that a sixth mass extinction is currently taking place on Earth with deforestation, hotter oceans, and climate change contributing to a mass extinction that “has proceeded further than most assume.”
Recent studies have concluded that 40 percent of the world’s insects are in decline, decreasing by 2.5 percent each year, and that vertebrate species animals are also declining yearly by 30 percent. And according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, a whopping 27 percent of animal species that were studied on the planet are currently thought to becoming alarmingly close to extinction already.
In fact, a study conducted in 2015 showed compelling evidence that amphibian, mammal, bird, and reptile species have died off so quickly over the past century that this extinction rate was demonstrated to have spiraled 100 times higher than should normally be expected.
However, according to The Metro, there are some things that human may still be able to do to stave off a sixth mass extinction event.
Dr. Ashley Dineen, a museum scientist of invertebrate paleontology at the California Academy of Sciences, explained.
“We’re interested in understanding why certain species and communities survived and recovered better than others.”
To learn more about how so many species managed to survive what has been called the “Great Dying,” which occurred 252 million years ago, scientists have been busy studying the ancient fossil remains of different sea creatures.
As Dr. Dineen noted, the vast majority of past biological studies have focused mainly on how many species weathered past extinction events, but today scientists are attempting to learn exactly how these ancient species adapted to the many stresses of these extinction events to actually survive and thrive.
‘”For a long time biology has focused on the number of species that survive extinction events, but we need to also ask what those species did and how they reacted to stresses–these insights are important as we push our planet into an increasingly uncertain future.”
After analyzing the fossils of different sea creatures studied, scientists have found that the species who survived all had “modern traits like greater mobility, higher metabolism, and more diverse feeding habits.” In other words, the species who survived extinction became much better predators and also grew even stronger. In fact, even mussels that were analyzed were found to have become much more defensive than they had previously been.
As scientists continue to analyze ancient fossils to learn what other traits these sea creatures possessed which led them to grow stronger after events like the “Great Dying,” they are hopeful that by better recognizing these traits, different species may survive the sixth mass extinction event which we are currently said to be in right now.