Bryson, Bill - On Extinction
Type of Spiritual Experience
So far, geologists have managed to identify 5 major extinction events, which caused major removals of life forms.
A description of the experience
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
… The Earth has seen 5 major extinction episodes in its time – the Ordovician, Devonian, Permian, Triassic and Cretaceous, in that order – and many smaller ones.
The Ordovician (440 million years ago) and Devonian (365 million) each wiped out about 80 to 85% of species.
The Triassic (210 million years ago) and Cretaceous (65 million) each wiped out about 70 to 75% of species.
But the Permian extinction of about 245 million years ago … wiped out 95% of animals known from the fossil record.
Altogether on land and water it is thought the earth lost 52% of its families – that's the level above genus and below order on the grand scale of life and perhaps as many as 96% of all its species.