Climate change had little to do with the demise of the dinosaurs, but the last million years before their extinction had a complex pattern of warming and cooling events that are important to our understanding of the end of their reign, according to geologists.
"The terrestrial paleoclimate record near the K-T is historically contradictory and poorly resolved," says Dr. Peter Wilf, assistant professor of geosciences at Penn State. "In contrast, the resolution of K-T marine climates that has emerged over the last 10 years is excellent. Our work brings the terrestrial record up to speed so that we can look for global climate events that occurred for both land and sea."
Wilf worked with Kirk R. Johnson, curator of paleontology, Denver Museum of Nature & Science, who provided the data on land plant fossils and Brian T. Huber, curator of Foraminifera, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, who provided the marine data.
Andrea Elyse Messer | EurekAlert!
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