Wyoming’s Complex Climate History
A recent article on the Wyoming Public Media website spoke of Wyoming's pronghorn, and how the animal is suffering through changes due to climate change.
The claim in this article is that weather extremes are more extreme than ever before. Droughts are worse, blizzards happen at unexpected and unprecedented times, and this is having an effect on these animals.
But in reality, nothing unusual is happening.
Actually, looking at Earth's climate today, we are actually living is a rather cool and calm period. This is a good time to be alive.
WYOMING'S CLIMATE PAST.
To understand what is happening now we have to first look at what has happened in the past.
When we look back we can see that the place we now call Wyoming has to go through massive changes over long periods of time. Nothing stays the same.
Wyoming used to be at the bottom of an ocean. At the time sea life existed the likes of wish the modern world has never seen. 99% of that life is now extinct.
Wyoming has been a swamp, with crocodiles. This region also had palm trees, marshes, and massive ferns. Most of that life has died off as well.
There are species of life that have never been known to humans and we will never know that they ever roamed the earth. They died off, due to natural climate change, long before humans ever arrived on the scene.
Wyoming has been much higher in elevation then it is now. This area has also been a sandy desert like Iraq. Mountains chains have risen and fallen many times over.
Dinosaurs roamed this region. All that is left of them not are the bones we find.
Then came the mammals like the saber tooth tiger, the giant sloth, the mammoth, and many other creatures that are now all extinct.
Wyoming has even been under a mile of ice, more than once.
OUR EVER CHANGING ECOSYSTEM.
The only thing that is constant is change.
As much as I love seeing the pronghorn of the west they have not always been here. I also know that they will not be forever.
If we could fast forward another 10,000 years we would not recognize this state. Who knows what manner of life will be living here there.
As humans, we have to get over the idea that the weather is supposed to be a certain way all the time.
Not every October will be just a certain temperature. We are not going to get a specific amount of rain or snow every year.
There are long term trends that change the plants ecology and that change is natural and ever ending. Any life that cannot adapt to it will perish.
Such is the natural order of things.