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About Deviant John DaileyMale/United States Groups :iconbiologyoffantasy: BiologyOfFantasy
 
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Literature
Perissodactyla Africanum, Great Lakes Earth
66 million years ago, just before the End-Cretaceous event, Laurasia (known to us as Europe, Asia and North America) was home to an unassuming little gardener.  It is a genus of small mammal called Hyopsodus.  Despite its weasel-like appearance, it was not a predator like its rival Miacis.  Its thick, broad molars revealed the true extent of its menu—plants.  No other mammal on Great Lakes Earth could eat plants, not even seeds, which made Hyopsodus a survivor.
 
Fast-forward six million years, and we find a Laurasia divided by a series of flood basalt eruptions with small windows of peace, some episodes lasting 10,000 years and others lasting 100,000 and still others between the two extremes, all totaling to the grand duration of 17 million years.  This left a great deal of Asia inaccessible for wildlife to colonize, thus pressuring natural selection on those in Europe and North America.  Back then, there were 18 species of
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Literature
The Afrotheres of Great Lakes Earth
70 million years ago, the islands and lagoons of North Africa (which included Balk at the time) began to turn into dry land.  It was a part of the Great Tectonic Excess, which began ten million years earlier and would continue for another 45 million years, a phase in which the modern mountains and other highlands of Great Lakes Earth took shape.  It also coincided with the seafloor slowing down, resulting in a marine regression, a drop in sea level.  Great Lakes Earth, which had been experiencing a global jungle climate for over 70 million years, was gradually but surely undergoing a transition into a more continental climate—warmer summers/cooler winters, hotter days/colder nights.  Continental or even near-continental climates suited the evolution of cosmopolitan genera of plants and animals, which was only remotely possible in the global jungle.  Among them, one of the pioneers of the drying North Africa, was a small, tenrec-like omnivore named Afro
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Literature
The Ice Age Giants That Never Were, GLE
Whenever one thinks “ice age”, we usually think of the great beasts who ruled the world during the Pleistocene—hairy elephants, cats with teeth like daggers, armadillos the size of cars, horned turtles, giant waterfowl, deer with antlers bigger than a moose’s, bears larger than the largest brown bear and sloths so big that they could not live on trees.  Indeed, that was the case back home.
 
But not on Great Lakes Earth.
 
Before we answer as to why not, let us rewind back to the beginning of these megafauna.  Meiolaniidae, the horned turtle family (though doubt exists on how closely related they are to other turtles), first appeared 58 million years ago, two million years after Terra Australis (Sahul and Antarctica) split off from Africa.  Back then, Sahul was full of reptiles.  But between 45 and five million years ago, the Icing of Antarctica forced the decline of Sahul’s reptiles until the horned turtles were left.  T
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Alternate Earth 600 (Dinosaur Empire) by Jdailey1991 Alternate Earth 600 (Dinosaur Empire) :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 11 2
Literature
Temperate Forests of Great Lakes Earth
Like the tropical rainforests, Great Lakes Earth’s forests in the temperate zones are products of multiple mass extinctions.  444.4 million years ago, all waterlogged spore-bearing plants became extinct.  250 million years ago, the plants that transdimensional botanists labeled as “Pandoran”, after their resemblance to the flora of the James Cameon film Avatar, were unable to deal with the Permian’s cooling, drying climate, making ample room for the conifers, ginkgoes and cycads that had been ecologically rare for less than 100 million years.  144 million years ago, sudden, dramatic global warming drove the ginkgoes into extinction, making room for the angiosperms, or flowering plants.  65 million years ago, a series of lava eruptions made the planet even hotter in a duration of ten to twelve thousand years, too fast for 100% of the cycads and 75% of the conifers.
 
Five million years ago, after many millions of years of warmth an
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Literature
South America, Great Lakes Earth
For :iconInkGink:’s May contest in :iconSpec-Evo-Club:.  Theme:  TROPCIAL
 
The jungles of Great Lakes Earth boast quite a history.  Since 444.4 million years ago, all plants on Great Lakes Earth were vascular seed-bearers.  Even though rainforests had been around for longer than that, modern rainforests would not make their debut until the Cretaceous Thermal Maximum 144 million years ago, when a dramatic increase in carbon dioxide raised the global temperature by nine to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.  This resulted in the extinction of the ginkgophytes (ginkgoes) and the gnetophytes (gnetums and ephedras).  The conifers remained untouched, consisting of araucarians, plums (“fruits” belonging to Cephalotaxaceae, not Amygdaloideae like back home), podocarps, cypresses, redwoods, umbrella pines and “China-firs”, but now spreading to include true pines.  The cycads, which had been in decline since the Perm
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HvV on Trial by Jdailey1991 HvV on Trial :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 3 4
Literature
The Peacocks of Great Lakes Earth
For :iconInkGink:’s April contest in :iconSpec-Evo-Club:.  Theme:  MIMICRY
 
The origin of Great Lakes Earth’s birds goes back 400 million years, when a species of fish called Tiktaalik made the decisive step out of water and onto land.  Fast-forward to 342 million years ago, and the jungles and swamps that covered the planet from pole to pole were alive with amphibians.  Then, one special species of amphibian branched out into two new major groups—the reptiles and the synapsids.  Both sides had a great destiny ahead, one being reptiles and then dinosaurs, the other being the seeds of the mammal family tree. Both went away from the fully sprawled legs of their amphibian ancestors and improved their postures into semi-erect. Both sides had evolved four-chambered hearts from the three chambers of their ancestors’ hearts, which separated deoxygenated blood from oxygenated blood. Both had 15% of their overall body volume a
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Return of the Recast by Jdailey1991 Return of the Recast :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 2 0 The Empire Strikes Back Recast by Jdailey1991 The Empire Strikes Back Recast :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 2 0 A New Hope Recast by Jdailey1991 A New Hope Recast :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 6 7 Plate Tectonics, Great Lakes Earth by Jdailey1991 Plate Tectonics, Great Lakes Earth :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 5 0 It's a Start by Jdailey1991 It's a Start :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 6 26
Literature
Crabs-of-Paradise
For :iconInkGink:’s March contest in :iconSpec-Evo-Club:.  Theme:  SEXUAL DIMORPHISM
 
Back home, there are an estimate of 80,500 species of chordates covering only three percent of the animal pie chart.  On Great Lakes Earth today, there are still 80,500 species of chordates, but now taking up only half of one percent of the pie chart.  Back home and on Great Lakes Earth, another 80% of the pie is reserved for one phylum—Arthropoda.  To understand how this could be, let us rewind 444.4 million years, in which life on Great Lakes Earth, over 150 million years after the Cambrian Explosion, witnessed its first and worst mass extinction.  90 to 95% of all life perished in a combination of carbon excesses from the flood basalt eruptions of Terra Australis (Sahul and East Antarctica); rogue algal blooms that robbed the oceans of oxygen, suffocating them and a 25-mile-wide ball of pure iron slamming into what we’d call easter
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SOMA On Trial by Jdailey1991 SOMA On Trial :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 1 1 The Arctic Plate by Jdailey1991 The Arctic Plate :iconjdailey1991:Jdailey1991 3 1

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Groups

I need to get this off my chest...


Long ago (though not long enough), I faved a page on Facebook called "In Defense of Animals", an animal rights organization centered in San Rafael, California since its founding in 1983.  Their slogan is:  "working to protect the rights, welfare, and habitats of animals."


But the cost is too much.  Instead of being dispassionate and constructive, their language is worded like some obsessed fanboy who completely abandons reality.  This is a blatant strike against the do and don'ts of journalism (my first BA major in USD).  They use colorful adjectives to speak their point.  Here's an example:

In Defense of Animals President, Dr. Marilyn Kroplick, said 'if you want to help protect elephants, don't visit the zoo. Instead help support real conservation efforts that keep wild animals in the wild where they belong.'


They also force us to abandon carnivory and embrace veganism because it is "our moral duty".


REALITY CHECK!


As I have said, writing and speaking like some angry fanboy will not get your point across.  Instead, it will make it hard for people to take you seriously.  Saying that you have evidence is not enough--not even close.  Per the rules of journalism, avoid colorful adjectives as they are more often than not subjective, and journalists--at least proper journalists--can't take sides.

Not everyone has the money to go to the wild.  Not only is it too expensive, for many people, it's just too far, and some health issues must be taken into consideration as well.  Here is how much it costs for a commercial tour to Yellowstone National Park, the first of its kind:

Fee schedule by vehicle capacity:

  • Commercial Sedan (1-6 seats): $25, plus $15 per person
  • Commercial Van (7-15 seats, regardless of occupancy): $125
  • Commercial Mini Bus (16-25 seats, regardless of occupancy): $200
  • Commercial Motor Coach (26 or more seats, regardless of occupancy): $300

Also, it's becoming less and less possible to return animals to the wild, not while the issues of poaching, climate change and habitat loss are still apparent.  Without zoos, where else would they go?  The folks at the IDA page on FB insistently suggested sanctuaries, but my experience at the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Kennsburg, Colorado, tells me that sanctuaries are not viable alternatives because breeding is not allowed.

An even bigger beef I have on IDA is that they are shoving veganism down our throat.  But the reality is that human evolution would not have taken the path it did without a taste for meat.  Without meat, our brains would be smaller and less sophisticated.  Without cooked meat, small brains would still be a problem, but now added by larger stomachs, hairier skin and spending most of each day doing nothing but chewing.

There is another reality that IDA, for whatever reason, just missed--there are too many livestock!  There are currently half a million bison and 70,000 bighorn sheep left in the world.  How does that stack up to farm animals?  As of 2014, 1,400,000,000 head of cattle, two billion sheep, 980 million pigs and twenty billion chickens.  If the fact that domesticated livestock one-sidedly outnumber their wild counterparts is concerning enough, get ready for a bigger shock.

The ruminant animal is unique because of its four stomach compartments: reticulum, rumen, omasum and abomasum. The rumen is a large, hollow muscular organ where microbial fermentation occurs. It can hold 40 to 60 gallons of material and an estimated 150 billion microorganisms per teaspoon are present in its contents. The function of the rumen as a fermentation vat and the presence of certain bacteria promote the development of gases. These gases are found in the upper part of the rumen with CO2 and CH4 making up the largest portion (Table 1). The proportion of these gases is dependent on rumen ecology and fermentation balance. Typically, the proportion of carbon dioxide is two to three times that of CH4, although a large quantity of CO2 is reduced to CH4. Approximately 132 to 264 gallons of ruminal gas produced by fermentation are belched each day. The eructation of gases via belching is important in bloat prevention but is also the way CH4 is emitted into the atmosphere.

So for the sake of conservation and climate, the slaughter needs to be updated, not uprooted.

Another reality is that dairy cows do not live their lives naturally.  Set them free, and what would happen?  They'd panic.  The demand for milk is so high that in order to raise efficiency and productivity, dairy cows are artificially inseminated.  Once the calf is born, it is taken away to be bottle-fed so that the cow cannot focus her efforts on lactating her young.  "Liberating" them would be their death knell because they don't know how to do what cattle are supposed to do.

On a personal note, I'm diabetic.  A world without meat is a world where my blood sugars spike up and down constantly, and I find that notion more than unacceptable.  I need meat to stay alive--all of humanity needs meat to stay alive because an all-plant diet is not a natural function of our species' anatomy.  Meat from a livestock (cow, poultry, pig, sheep) I bat no eye on.  Meat from a pet (dog, cat, horse) or a wild animal raises justifiable concern.

In Defense of Animals, for reasons that escape me, can't see that reality.  It is too passionate, discriminate and biased for its own good. It villifies and demonizes everything for the actions of the one or the few.

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John Dailey
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