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Lou Taylor – Multituberculates and Marsupials


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Join #WIPS for our April program with paleontologist Lou Taylor, in the Ricketson Auditorium at Denver Museum of Nature & Science. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Multituberculates and Marsupials: Survivors of the K-Pg Boundary Event

The longest-lived order of mammals, Multituberculata, no longer exists and there is but one extant marsupial in North America. Consequently even paleontological aficionados in North America tend to know little about these mammals. However, both groups are well represented in the fossil record of North America and diverse extant marsupial faunae exist elsewhere in the world. Multituberculates and marsupials were most abundant near the end of the Cretaceous, but ultimately the former became extinct globally and the latter in North America. Many intriguing questions remain about their former existence in North America. What were they? How did they survive the K-Pg Boundary event? Why did the multituberculates go extinct? Why did the marsupials cease to exist in North America? Where did they go? How did the single marsupial that exists in North America today get here? Where did it come from?

About our Speaker
Lou Taylor is pleased to be an honorary life member of WIPS since 1989. Since becoming a WIPS member in 1985 he has served as president twice and has, at one time or another, been vice president, treasurer, secretary, newsletter editor, and symposium chair and moderator. This is Lou's 12th regular meeting presentation. Lou teaches adult classes at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science where he has been a research associate for many years. Lou was involved in the WIPS contributions to the study of Porcupine Cave in the 1990s that resulted in the volume "Biodiversity Response to Climate Change in the Middle Pleistocene: the Porcupine Cave fauna form Colorado." A recipient of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology's Gregory Award, Lou's current interests are paleontological education and Paleocene mammals, although he occasionally dabbles in dinosaur paleontology.