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Number 9 Supernova
Roughly 66 million years ago, a massive asteroid, 6 to 9 miles in diameter, hit the Gulf of Mexico. There’s also geological evidence in the sediment of terrestrial and marine rocks. The asteroid set off dust in the atmosphere that blocked out the sun, causing temperatures to plummet. It most likely triggered other factors such as volcanism or changes of the sea level. The impact hypothesis is currently the one most favored by the scientific community, but its’ not the only one.
Number 8 Selenium
Volcanic activity during the Mesozoic era, from 250 to 66 million years ago, caused massive selenium deposits all-over the world.
Number 7 Vitamin D
This disease is caused by a deficiency of phosphates, calcium and vitamin D. As clouds of dust covered the atmosphere, dinosaurs weren’t getting enough sunlight. Dinosaurs, particularly the larger ones, gradually became weaker and, in only a few generations, vanished entirely.
Number 6 Gravity Shift
Despite having been debunked by a number of physicists, the gravity shift theory still remains a somewhat fascinating concept. It states that, millions of years ago, the Earth’s gravity was weaker. It supposedly explains how the sauropods evolved and could still move around, despite their tremendous size. Sauropods, like the Brontosaurus or Argentinosaurus, were the true giants of the dinosaur world. These pillar-legged, long-necked creatures could way close to 100 tons and some, like Sauroposeidon, could grow to be 60 feet tall. Then, a sudden shift in the Earth’s gravity led to the extinction of all the larger dinosaur species.
He claimed that many of the structures that dinosaurs, such as Triceratops or Ankylosaurus, had on their heads were meant to protect them from sunlight. However, this adaptation eventually succumbed to rising temperatures towards the end of the Mesozoic.
The late Cretaceous period saw the development of symbiotic relationships between flying insects and various pathogens. This supposedly explains the disappearance of marine species that likely wouldn’t have been affected by the same pathogens as those on land.
Number 3 Caterpillars Ate Their Food
Entomologist Stanley Flanders wrote a paper in the 1960s proposing that the dinosaurs were brought to extinction by caterpillars. His theory was that moths and butterflies evolved in absence of a natural predator. Therefore, their caterpillars would have consumed vast amounts of vegetation uninterrupted. Herbivorous dinosaurs needed to eat a lot of plant material to maintain their enormous weight. It would have taken only a few years of extreme plant scarcity for the dinosaurs to disappear.
Number 2 Egg Problems
There are a few theories suggesting that dinosaurs became extinct because of problems with their eggs. One theory claims that more and more animals developed a taste for freshly produced dinosaur eggs. This wouldn’t be abnormal animal behavior since egg-eating has been practiced for hundreds of millions of years.
Number 1 Aliens
Some ancient alien theorists have proposed an alternative explanation to the K-Pg extinction event. It’s highly unlikely that humans would have thrived alongside giant hyper-carnivorous predators, at least not within the current timeframe of several millennia. The theory is that extraterrestrial beings exterminated the dinosaurs to give humanity a better evolutionary chance. Some versions claim that the dinosaurs had been genetically engineered by aliens in the first place, as an experiment. Opinions vary on how the extermination was carried out.