With the human species in a full dominance swing over the world, is the world due for a mass extinction? At the end of the Cretaceous period, 65 million years ago, an event occurred that would forever change organisms’ interactions amidst the earth’s biota. For 160 million years, the dinosaurs played the same role that humans are staring in on the present earth. The question is, when will this reign terminate?
The dinosaurs had 160 million years to completely diversify into over 330 species, and while the animal kingdom was able to radiate into thousands of different species, the one species that has taken control of nearly every ecosystem on this earth is the Homo sapiens. The anatomically modern human has only been roaming the earth for 200,000 years. Humans are so homogeneous that they all fit into one species that has very little variation at the chromosomal level. Therefore, while allegedly, the intensely disparate dinosaurs needed an enormous asteroid to crash into the earth at the Yucatan Peninsula to inevitably end their reign over the earth’s ecosystems, what would need to happen for the same result to happen to an exceptionally homogenous group, whose parasitic relationships have affected every organism on this planet?