Latest Issue of Science News


Fossil leaves yield extinction clues

Analyses of fossil leaves provide more evidence that the mass extinction that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago was sudden and probably brought about by an extraterrestrial impact.

The demise of the dinosaurs coincided both with a major extraterrestrial impact and massive volcanism in India. Both of those events–one sudden, the other unfolding over as many as 2 million years–would have dramatically influenced Earth's climate by pumping carbon dioxide and other gases into the atmosphere. Some scientists have proposed that volcanism alone was enough to have caused the extinctions.

Note: To comment, Science News subscribing members must now establish a separate login relationship with Disqus. Click the Disqus icon below, enter your e-mail and click “forgot password” to reset your password. You may also log into Disqus using Facebook, Twitter or Google.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join SSP today or Log in.