What creatures eat pets

The creatures of the future

What do the animals look like who will live on earth in five, one hundred and two hundred million years from now? Experts have thought about it - and created creatures never seen on the computer

A world emerges

Giant squids weighing eight tons, birds with four wings or fish fluttering through the woods like butterflies: many will say that these are only imaginations. But the international research group worked according to strict rules: every plant and every animal that the scientists designed could develop in the future according to the basic principles of evolution, the doctrine of the origin of species.

It is even very likely that similar beings will populate our planet in millions of years, says the biologist McNeill Alexander from England. After five years of hard work, the scientists had developed over 40 animals on the computer.

The earth in five million years

Five million years have passed since the present day. The earth has become a hostile place: ice sheets over three kilometers thick cover large parts of the planet. Few animals and plants have been able to adapt to these extreme conditions, and humans have long since become extinct.

The earth in a hundred million years

But at some point the Ice Age also came to an end. A hundred million years after the Age of Man, the ice caps have melted and the earth is warm and humid. These are optimal conditions for the emergence of new species.

A large part of the planet is now covered by shallow seas, the melt water of the glaciers. A huge predator lives here: the phantom of the seas is up to ten meters long and four meters wide. Its ancestors were the state jellyfish, which, like the phantom, have already formed colonies from many individual animals with different tasks.

On the surface of the predator there are "sails" with which it can slide in a certain direction. Its tentacles carry suction bells that make careless victims disappear at lightning speed on the seabed.

Giant spider crabs live in some of the suction bells and defend the phantom with their powerful pincers. In return, they get plenty of food from the host. The biologist also calls this community, from which both partners benefit, symbiosis.

At the equator there are huge swamps that are hot and humid - like in a greenhouse. Plants can grow particularly well there. Therefore, large herbivores have emerged over the course of millions of years. The dinosaur turtles, which move slowly and swaying, are particularly impressive. With a body weight of over 120 tons and a height of more than seven meters, they are even bigger than the largest dinosaurs.

Gradually, more and more volcanoes erupt on earth. The atmosphere is filled with dust and ash, and the sunlight barely penetrates the black clouds. Toxic substances in the volcanic gases fall on the earth as "acid rain" and destroy almost all animals and plants.

The earth in two hundred million years

In two hundred million years the earth will no longer be recognizable. According to the scientists, it probably only consists of a large land mass surrounded by a huge ocean. Only a few species survived the mass extinction. In the interior of the continent, a central desert is spreading, in which the insects have taken control.

But a unique worm also lives here, which researchers have called the gardener worm. At the start of the day he crawls out of the crevices and sunbathes. In doing so, it spreads its green body appendages, in which algae produce sugar from sunlight. This is how the gardener worm gets enough food. This community is also a symbiosis, because it is only through the worm that the algae get into the sun.

In the northwest of the supercontinent, a huge humid rainforest has emerged. There the small forest fish buzz through the foliage like hummingbirds. However, they are not birds, but the ancestors of the fish. The flying fish of today have already been able to jump out of the water and glide a little way over the sea. Forest fish, on the other hand, have real wings that have developed from the pectoral fins and can even sing with the gill parts.

The impressive colossal squid strides through the jungle. Since the animals living on land disappeared as a result of the great mass extinction a hundred million years ago, the squid have taken over this habitat. The colossal squid is the size of an elephant and carries its weight with strong arms and a network of muscles. Life on earth could look like this or something similar in the future. The interesting project was inspired by the well-known book "Creatures of the Future" by the scientist Dougal Dixon. It should arouse interest in evolution in as many people as possible, emphasizes producer John Adams.