Re: Earliest evidence of fire question

David Woodcock (
9 Aug 1996 08:14:13 GMT

: : Except, perhaps, for the open fires started by lightning?

: : (Although I lived in the Serengeti Park for two years and, at least
: : around *us*, no lightning started fires. But that doesn't mean that it
: : didn't some time in the past 3 MY.)

: Lee checked that. He saw plenty of grass fires, but almost all man-caused.
: The issue did come up when he challenged the received wisdom back in the
: '50s. The problem with depending only on lightning is that regrowth is
: then much greater, and good-sized trees are fire-resistant.

: : --Stephanie

: --
: Harry Erwin, Internet:, Web Page:
: 49 year old PhD student in computational neuroscience ("how bats do it" 8)
: and lecturer for CS 211 (data structures and advanced C++)

Does he assume present day temperatures at 3 Mya ?
Apparently lightening is very sensitive to temperature,
a change of a couple of degrees can change the number of
lightening strokes four fold.

--David Woodcock