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Posted Thu Dec 3 2009: from New Scientist:
Antarctica was climate refuge during Permian extinction
The cool climate of Antarctica was a refuge for animals fleeing climate change during the biggest mass extinction in Earth's history, suggests a new fossil study. The discovery may have implications for how modern animals will adapt to global warming. Around 250 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, about 90 per cent of land species were wiped out as global temperatures soared. A cat-sized distant relative of mammals, Kombuisia antarctica, seems to have survived the extinction by fleeing south to Antarctica.... It is still not certain what caused the end-Permian global warming and subsequent mass extinctions, but a leading theory is that massive volcanic eruptions in Siberia poured carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, driving temperatures up dramatically worldwide and forcing many species into extinction.
[Read more stories about: global warming, migration changes, carbon emissions]

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'Doc Jim says:
Antarctica: the last refuge.

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