Monday, November 22, 2021

December 11 - Mass Extinction Events and What Causes Them

Presented by Thomas R. Holtz, Jr., Ph.D.

Principal Lecturer, Department of Geology, University of Maryland

Research Associate, Department of Paleobiology, National Museum of Natural History

Saturday, December 11, 2021, 1:30 pm
B-CC Regional Services Center
4805 Edgemoor Lane 2nd Floor (West Room)
Bethesda, MD

Mass extinctions are catastrophic overhauls of the diversity of life on land and sea. There are five well-attested such events in the history of life, and evidence we could be on the cusp of a sixth. We'll look at the record of past events, and what we know about how they happened and what might have caused them. These environmental crises might serve as warnings for our own future, and what a "sixth extinction" might mean for human society.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. is Principal Lecturer in Vertebrate Paleontology at the Department of Geology, University of Maryland, College Park. His research focuses on the origin, evolution, adaptations, and behavior of carnivorous dinosaurs, and especially of tyrannosauroids (Tyrannosaurus rex and its kin). He received his Bachelors in Earth & Planetary Geology at Johns Hopkins in 1987 and his Ph.D. from the Department of Geology & Geophysics at Yale in 1992. He is also a Research Associate of the Department of Paleobiology of the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History and serves on the Scientific Council of Maryland Academy of Science (which operates the Maryland Science Center (Baltimore, MD)). In addition to his dinosaur research, Holtz has been active in scientific outreach. He has been a consultant on museum exhibits around the world, and on numerous documentaries. He is the author of award-winning popular audience books. He is the current editor of the “Life of the Past” series at Indiana University Press.

This talk will be live streamed.

Note: Effective November 20 at 12:01 a.m.: all persons in Montgomery County over the age of two must wear a face covering in any location accessible to the public.