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A boulder that was swallowed by a lot of clay

24 November 2014

At http://phys.org/print335727974.html … builders in Everett, Washington State, came across the boulder 30 feet beneath the ground – a rather large pebble

  It is described as a glacial erratic and is roughly 300,000 pounds in weight (estimate) left behind by the Ice Age 18,000 years ago (another estimate). They were building an underground garage for an hotel complex when they came across the stone – a sort of giant pebble. Intriguingly, if it is really dated just 18,000 years ago where did all the clay come from that smothers it?

A case of jumping to conclusions by paleontologists is found at http://phys.org/print335636742.html … taken from Nature Communications. An open cast coal mine in western India, in the Gujarat, has yielded lots of fossil teeth and bones, including an early representative of the horse and rhino family. The illogical conclusion is that these animals evolved on the sub continent – when it was an island. In geochronology based on Plate Tectonics India was separated from Africa and Australia and moved around the southern ocean ending up crashing into Asia. At that point of juddering the horses escaped and went on to inhabit the rest of Asia – and Europe. However, it is also known that India shared with Europe other animals of the Eocene – such as primates and ungulates, and a rodent species. Was India really an island?

At http://phys.org/print335712503.html …. geologists have discovered a buried canyon, or rift valley, in southern Tibet. It is thought to have been carved out by a river and then Tibet was raised causing a steep rift from the highlands to the Indian plains below. The canyon is covered by 250m of sediments – and this too is attributed to the river pouring out rocky material and carving out the gash on the side of the plateau. Previously it had been thought the debris was due to a glacier nose pushing it down the river valley – but that was before they realised how deep the gorge actually was. It is all a matter of modelling of course.

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