Found 20,000 remains the biggest disaster in the world


24/12/2010

Found 20,000 remains the biggest disaster in the world, at the age of 252 million years

Incredible findings of a 20,000 fossils including plants, carnivorous fish and large reptiles were found on a hillside in Lyuopinge, south-west of China.

As it turned out, the remains of ancient marine ecosystem that has ceased to exist because of the most devastating mass extinction event in the history of the Earth.

Among the well-preserved remains are clams, sea urchins and arthropods, as well as a much larger animals that occupied the top of the food chain, such as carnivorous fish and the first ichthyosaur, carnivorous marine reptiles that grow to four meters in length.

Among the remains found are rare fragments of land-based living creatures that survived the same period, including part of a coniferous tree and a tooth reptilian archosaurs.

Fossils were dug out of the rocks that were formed when the sediment in the ocean and sank solidified millions of years ago in the place where now there is Lyuoping in Yunnan province of China.

Over 4.5 billion years of Earth history, occurred several mass extinctions, but what happened at the end of the Permian period is unrivaled in scale. Were lost 96% of marine species and 70% of land in the course of events, known as the "great extinction".

What caused this global catastrophe is still the subject of debate, but Michael Benton, a paleontologist at the University of Bristol, who led the latest study, said that the evidence points to a long and intense eruption of the Siberian Traps, a large region of volcanic rock. Under this scenario, the massive eruption caused climate catastrophe, throwing huge amounts of gas to the atmosphere for half a million years.

On materials: Guardian


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