Template talk:Extinction events graphical timeline

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This template needs an overhaul. It screws up any article that uses by making the article too wide. I'm deleting it from the articles I watch until it gets fixed. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 19:08, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

I think I've fixed it; at least it's fine on Firefox & IE. If there are any browsers that struggle to render it, please list them below and I'll try to work round them... Verisimilus T 19:51, 17 August 2007 (UTC)
I'm having a problem with Safari. The revised template is still causing problems. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 00:38, 18 August 2007 (UTC)
I wondered whether that might be it. I'll hop on to an apple today and try to get it sorted! Verisimilus T 08:34, 19 August 2007 (UTC)
It still widens the page for me in firefox. ornis (t) 11:19, 19 August 2007 (UTC)
It should now be significantly better. I'll try and seek down the last few pixels when I get the chance - hopefully it's usable in articles as is? Verisimilus T 11:45, 19 August 2007 (UTC)
It's not quite perfect. On Safari, it's still very slightly wide, and I can't tell you why. Maybe you need to tweak the width down a tad. However, it's not like it was, so I'm going to keep it on the article. Warn me if you tweak the graphic, so we can check it out. Good job, BTW. It's really helps put the K-T article in context with the geological timeline. Also, if you have time, take a look at Cretaceous–Tertiary extinction event and help me get it to FAC status. Thanks!!!! OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 17:47, 19 August 2007 (UTC)
Ah-ha! Fixed it! This should now be scrollbar free. For what it's worth, the fix was to set the "overflow" property of the container DIV to "hidden". If that means anything to you, chances are it's either blindingly obvious, or useful. Verisimilus T 19:36, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
P.S. — I'd love to help out with the K-T, but really need to finish my tweaking of Cambrian explosion and fix up Burgess shale first (countering Wikipedia's systemic bias against things that don't mention Dinosaurs...) I'll see what I can do if I get the chance though! Verisimilus T

Problems exist. On low res screen there is some severe text overlap of Aptian and Middle Miocene events as well as Paleo/Neogene bar. In addition the Paleozoic color bar ends within the Triassic and the Mesozoic in late Paleogene. I use Opera browser at low resolution (800x600) for visibility and my poor eyes. Vsmith 01:44, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

You raise a valid point. I've been taxing my brain over the past few days struggling to come put with a solution!
I've considered and dismissed:
  • Wrapping the timeline, emulating the old template
  • Shrinking the text size - this makes it harder for all users to read
  • Adjusting the font size as per the page width. I don't think this is possible using only CSS...
  • Displaying text beyond the edge of the bar. This causes horrible overlap.
It's an issue I'm keen to address so if anyone's got any great ideas... I'm all ears!
Verisimilus T 20:00, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

<RI>I'm back to having concerns over the template. On Safari and Firefox (at least on a Mac), the events are not lining up to the actually event boundaries. On Firefox, it's off, but almost useable. On Safari, the K-T event appears to happen in the Neogene. I've tried it with different resolutions, and I can't get rid of the problem. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 06:34, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

My first thought it that you might be using a non-standard font via your monobook. If that's the case, the problem is easily solved, when I get the chance - if not, I'm going to have to work my brain a little harder! Is the offset always by the same extent, or does it vary with font size / screen resolution? I can imagine what it causing the very minor (~1Ma) shift in Firefox, but the Safari question is more confusing. I'll take a proper look when I'm back from wikibreak... Verisimilus T 08:27, 1 September 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you mean by standard font in my monobook. There are some parts of Wikipedia with which I am not familiar. I'm not so worried about Firefox, but on Safari, it really is bad. Apple is doing a major upgrade of Safari soon, so maybe it's not worth worrying about. OrangeMarlin Talk• Contributions 23:17, 10 September 2007 (UTC)


I usually try to keep the templates collapsible, but when I do it with this one it messes up the graphic (I use Firefox). Unfortunately, I am not skilled enough with the graphics to fix it myself. I am making this request and leaving it entirely up to you if you want to fix it or not - if you do fix it, please update the template; if you don't, I won't bother you about it. Here it what I was trying to do:

Regards.--Old Hoss 03:33, 24 August 2007 (UTC)


The navigation boxes centre text by default - I simply overruled that!

Verisimilus T 19:07, 24 August 2007 (UTC)

Excellent, thanks for taking the time.--Old Hoss 19:11, 24 August 2007 (UTC)


For me, using IE, at a screen resolution of 1280x1024, the "0" which is supposed to be at the right-hand end of the template appears on the left, beneath the "-600", and the text "Middle Miocene disruption" overwrites itself. But in Firefox, the template displays correctly. Does anyone else see the same thing, or is it just me? DH85868993 (talk) 16:14, 13 May 2008 (UTC)

Extent of timeline[edit]

copied from User talk:Smith609

Hi Verisimilus, I was looking at the above template and wondering whether there was a good reason for starting the timeline at the Ediacaran? There are a number of known extinction events predating it - see Cryogenian, Huronian, Snowball Earth etc. These all led to large-scale extinctions, albeit of primitive life-forms - see Abiogenesis. What are your thoughts? ciao Rotational (talk) 06:30, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

As I understand it there's neither consensus on exactly when these events occurred, nor on their scale or significance. Life before the Ediacaran was not prone to large extinctions in the way that Phanerozoic life is; ecosystems were stable. (Reference: Butterfield 2007 in Palaeontology)
Until the extinctions are recognised and gain widespread acceptance in the literature, if that ever happens, I don't think they merit inclusion here. Maybe if an article entitled "Precambrian extinction events" was created discussing their existence and significance it would merit inclusion. Martin (Smith609 – Talk) 12:27, 28 October 2008 (UTC)

Exact times are always a problem when dealing with events that occurred a few billion years back, as are fossil records indicating scale and significance. Consequently the Butterfield statement that "ecosystems were stable" and that the system was not prone to large extinctions, is wildly speculative. ciao Rotational (talk) 04:37, 29 October 2008 (UTC)

The reviewers of the paper and the 13 papers citing his work don't seem to convey this impression. As you say dating is a problem and while biodiversity waxed and waned we don't have the resolution to know how fast this happened. Consequently I've yet to see a claim for a pre-Ediacaran extinction event which is not wildly speculative, and Butterfield's claim of "profound morphological ⁄ evolutionary stasis" is well supported by the evidence he presents. Martin (Smith609 – Talk) 12:42, 29 October 2008 (UTC)

Butterfield seems to be oblivious of the notion that a cataclysmic extinction event can come wrapped up as the onset of a stable environment, ending the careers of some portions of the biotic spectrum while affording exciting new niches for others - "One man's meat is another man's poison". Rotational (talk) 06:12, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

Permian/Triassic extinction event[edit]

Graphs show hat it actually started, at least for marine animals, already from end of Middle Permian. --Artman40 (talk) 15:05, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Holocene extinction event[edit]

An IP editor has been removing this from the list, claiming that it is a 'sub-minor' extinction. This doesn't match my recollection, and one source at least considers it a 'mass extinction' (DOI:10.1126/science.1059342). Before you remove it again, please provide a link to a reliable source on this page that agrees with your perception of the magnitude of the extinction. Thanks, Martin (Smith609 – Talk) 19:09, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maxima[edit]

Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum was a fairly large benthic extinction event. IMHO, it should be included. (talk) 23:57, 28 January 2010 (UTC)

Timeline misalignment[edit]

The period and era timelines are out of sync with eachother and the extinction event markers are out of place. Abyssal (talk) 02:11, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

yes agreed, one of the bugs being that the Cenozoic is divided into three periods: The Paleogene, Neogene, and Quaternary, and they don't line up, pretty sure that's something to do with geological periods template, fixing that should fix this. EdwardLane (talk) 08:44, 25 June 2013 (UTC)