For the February 14 session of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology’s 2019 Speaker Series, Dr. Win McLaughlin (Oberlin College, Ohio) will present “Changing Landscapes, Climate, and Life in the Tien Shan of Kyrgyzstan.”
The high Tien Shan mountains that dominate Kyrgyzstan in Central Asia are some of the youngest mountains on Earth. Their extremely rapid uplift continues today, affecting humans with a high earthquake hazard. This ‘mountain-building’ has drastically impacted life and ecosystems over the past 10 million years. As recently as five million years ago, the Tien Shan mountains were semi-forested landscapes full of fantastic beasts such as tusked rhinos, spike-headed giraffes, and grizzly-bear-sized hyenas.
Dr. McLaughlin will discuss how ecosystems rapidly and drastically change, driving the evolution of modern cold-adapted organisms and ecological communities, as illustrated by the Tien Shan of Kyrgyzstan.
The Royal Tyrrell Museum’s Speaker Series talks are free and open to the public. Presentations are given in the museum auditorium every Thursday at 11:00 a.m. until April 25. Speaker Series talks are also available on the Museum’s YouTube channel at: youtube.com/c/RoyalTyrrellMuseumofPalaeontology.