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A massive extinction occurred in Africa 30 million years ago: it was a mystery to science

A massive extinction occurred in Africa 30 million years ago: it was a mystery to science

L ‘Eocene is a period in between 55 and 33 million years ago Since the past, characterized by climatic disturbances This cooled the planet, which led to the extinction of various species in Europe and Asia. It was a common idea that Africa had escaped from Extinction phenomenonBut a new study may re-evaluate this belief.

The last part of the Eocene was held by one Violent climate reversal Resulting in Cooling the planet, causing the expansion of polar ice caps, lower sea levels, the transformation of forests into grasslands, and a decrease in carbon dioxide. Another study returned toEocene rare yakite crystals.

Because of these climatic disturbances as well 60% of animal species in Asia and Europe are extinct. The African continent is located in Tropical climate range, it appears that he was not involved in the devastating consequences of the cooling processes of that period, thanks to the mitigating measures of the tropics.

An international research team made up of British, American and Egyptian researchers reviewed the fossil record of some Species dating back to that period under the exam. These fossils represent different mammal groups weather. Among them we find: a group of carnivores named tooth hyenaTwo groups of rodents abnormality that they istricognati , two groups of primates, and strepserine that they anthropoid.

The research team, which analyzed the fossil remains of these mammals, produced a series of evolutionary trees, based on the emergence and disappearance of new evolutionary lines and ramifications of different groups. This made it possible to identify Significant losses in the period between the Eocene and the Oligocene, and to demonstrate that although a temperate climate is maintained, the African biodiversity participated in the mechanisms of extinction In the same way as in Europe and Asia.

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Group advocates were analyzed They “disappear” from the fossil record, to reappear, after this great extinction event, after millions of years only with different anatomical features.

The characteristics most analyzed by researchers are dental structures of the groups examined. When members of the group appeared in the evolutionary branch, they presented different teeth, indicating change the power supply.

According to the scientists, these evolutionary mechanisms are central to the emergence of new species in Environmental outlets left vacant, especially with regard to the phenomenon of genetic drift known as Evolutionary ‘bottleneck’, which represents a point where most species and biodiversity are extinct, due to non-evolutionary phenomena, “making way” Various new forms of life.

Dorian de VriesThe researcher at the University of Salford and author of the study said:It was a real reset button“.

Climate change over geological time has shaped the evolutionary tree of life“, he added Hesham Sallam, researcher at Mansoura University in Egypt, co-author of the article, and conclusion.Collecting evidence from the past is the easiest way to see how climate change will affect ecosystems“.

Did you know that on our planet The five mass extinctions were?