Geoff Sebesta (megatexas) wrote in little_details,
Geoff Sebesta

evolution of birds, geology of texas

I'm trying to reconstruct a small hill in Austin, Texas, as it would have appeared in the late Cretaceous. Although I've found a lot of interesting things -- there were live oak trees, and apatosauruses -- I'm unable to determine what level of evolution birds were at about 80mya. Could grackles have coexisted with apatosauruses? One independent source implies that they could -- there were birds before Gondwana broke up, which was long before the period I'm discussing. There were definitely crocodiles, sharks, and a relative of the shrimp called the sea scorpion?

What kind of flying creatures were there 80mya? I want something like the birds that flock on the backs of hippopotamuses for my herd of apatosaurs.

I'm surmising that a few of the higher hills in Austin would have been islands 80mya and that a sort of sandy subtropical swamp grew there, with live oaks of course. Something like Jekyll Island, on the Georgia coast. Does this sound plausible?

I've googled and wikid the heck out of this, and done a bit of book research. Actually, I've even built a model of the hill out of sculpey, so if there were no islands then, I'm willing to move the time period. 80mya was my best guess for when the sea receded past the Texas Hill Country.
Tags: ~animals: birds, ~science: geology

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