Interesting piece in Slate on how Dinosaurs get all of our natural history focused attention and why we should be advocating for “mammalmania.”
It drives me a little bit crazy. When I see parents tugging their kids through a fossil mammal hall, urging, “Let’s go find T. rex!” I want to run over to them and start yelling, “No! Wait! Look there. That’s a prehistoric manatee with legs! And check that one out—it’s a miniature camel that used to live in North America. And this critter, this is a bear-dog, and it was just as ferocious as the name implies.” I’d more than likely have security called on me, but it might just be worth it. The mammals of the past 66 million years—not to mention those that lived alongside the dinosaurs—were some of the most fantastic animals to ever live on this planet. They’re certainly as worthy of our attention and admiration as any dinosaur, and I’m sick of what has basically amounted to willful ignorance about the beasts that have thrived in the aftermath of dinosaurian Armageddon.
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