Is a Jurassic World coming for us?

It is, of course, a very important subject at the moment, with the film coming out imminently. Most people will watch Jurassic World and think that it’s a ridiculous idea created by Hollywood for a few billion views, and yes, they are probably right. I know what I’m going to say will sound like a bit of a stretch, and I know that the idea of recreating dinosaurs is a ridiculous stretch. However, when I watch Jurassic World, I see something with a deeper meaning. 

The whole point of Jurassic Park in the first place was to create a park where you could step back in time and see what used to live on planet Earth. Clearly, it wasn’t a success. The part that actually was a success was the actual recreation of the dinosaurs. You see, studying paleontology, I can understand that extracting DNA from amber that has been exceptionally preserved can successfully aid in recreating these creatures. From that perspective, it was a success. 

The meaning that hides behind Jurassic World can represent how this power humans have over creation can lead to our societal collapse. By introducing species where we don’t understand the consequences to our ecosystems, we’re destroying much more than just a park. I know we haven’t done it to the same extent but we are invading our ecosystems by bringing alien species into them. This was done in Australia whereby foxes were introduced to reduce the numbers of rabbits and hares. However, the foxes (like teenagers), decided to be lazy and hunt the slower koalas instead, thus the rabbit problem was never solved and the koalas suffered. The food chain was thrown out of sync as a result. I know what you’re thinking, it’s only rabbits and foxes, right? Not much of a problem? Well, by doing this, the food chain was completely altered. The foxes didn’t have a natural predator, and neither did the rabbits. 

Late Cretaceous food web 

Comparing this to Jurassic World, you can clearly see that the dinosaurs at the top of the food chain (your t-rex’s etc), don’t have a natural predator. There is no way they can survive without scientific intervention because they don’t have a natural food chain to live in. Scientists created an ecosystem for them thinking this would prevent predation of humans. However, the climatic conditions and the flora/fauna could not be completely accurate as during the Jurassic for example, there was a supercontinent called Pangaea whereby the dino species could move up and down latitudes if the climate changed. However, since the Mesozoic (when the dinosaurs lived), flora and fauna have changed due to the break-up of Pangaea into different continents (as we recognise them today), this is not possible anymore. The scientists attempted to restrict the habitat of the dinosaurs to a small island which is not how they would have lived originally. The dinosaur food web would not have been the same as they tried to create it (as most went extinct 66 Mya). This ‘experiment’ was clearly not going to work but humans did not see it failing. They thought they could control nature. They thought they could play God?

There is a reason humans and dinosaurs didn’t co-exist and there is a reason that they shouldn’t. 

I know this sounded ridiculous and if you’ve kept reading, thank you. I’m trying to prove the power that humans can have over creation and how we should try to think about the consequences when messing with nature. Humans cannot act as though they are more powerful than creation. Afterall, we have only been on this Earth for 10,000 years whereas the ecosystems we’re destroying have been living for millions of years. Nature doesn’t have any obligation to keep allowing us to survive in it (Gaia Hypothesis) and will continue to keep living after humans are gone. We can’t act as God when we’re just a part of creation. We need to think about the consequences of our actions. We have to try and work with nature instead of acting against it.

So to answer the opening statement: is a Jurassic World coming for us? Well, maybe not in terms of actual dinosaurs, but in terms of humans taking power over the Earth to a point where we can’t control it anymore, yes I think it could. So if you watch Jurassic World, try to think about what humans are doing in the real world to destroy nature and how life finds a way.

References:

Cover photo