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Early Climate

Ancient fossils hold clues for predicting future climate change

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1000pa (Apr. 10, 2011) — By studying fossilized mollusks from some 3.5 million years ago, UCLA geoscientists and colleagues have been able to construct an ancient climate record that holds clues about the long-term effects of Earth's current levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, a key contributor to global climate change.

Two novel geochemical techniques used to determine the temperature at which the mollusk shells were formed suggest that...

1000pa (Apr. 10, 2011) — By studying fossilized mollusks from some 3.5 million years ago, UCLA geoscientists and colleagues have been able to construct an ancient climate record that holds clues about the long-term effects of Earth's current levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, a key...

Ancient 'hyperthermals' serve as guide to anticipated climate changes; Sudden global warming events more frequent?

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1000pa (Mar. 16, 2011) — Bursts of intense global warming that have lasted tens of thousands of years have taken place more frequently throughout Earth's history than previously believe, according to evidence gathered by a team led by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego researchers.

Richard Norris, a professor of geology at Scripps who co-authored the report, said that releases of carbon dioxide sequestered in the deep oceans...

1000pa (Mar. 16, 2011) — Bursts of intense...

A 'fossil seismograph' for ancient earthquakes

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1000pa (Mar. 22, 2011) — Earthquakes are one of the world's biggest enigmas -- impossible to predict and able to wreak untold damage within seconds. Now, a new tool from Tel Aviv University may be able to learn from earthquakes of the ancient past to better predict earthquakes of the future.

Prof. Shmuel Marco of Tel Aviv University's Department of Geophysics and Planetary Sciences in the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Faculty of Exact...

1000pa (Mar. 22, 2011) — Earthquakes are one of the...

New interpretation of Antarctic ice cores: Prevailing theory on climate history expanded

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1000pa (Mar. 8, 2011) — Climate researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association (AWI) expand a prevalent theory regarding the development of ice ages. In the current issue of the journal Nature three physicists from AWI's working group "Dynamics of the Palaeoclimate" present new calculations on the connection between natural insolation and long-term changes in global climate activity....

1000pa (Mar. 8, 2011) — Climate researchers at...

Arctic environment during an ancient bout of natural global warming

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1000pa (Feb. 27, 2011) — Scientists are unravelling the environmental changes that took place around the Arctic during an exceptional episode of ancient global warming. Newly published results from a high-resolution study of sediments collected on Spitsbergen represent a significant contribution to this endeavour.

The study was led by Dr Ian Harding and Prof John Marshall of the University of Southampton's School of Ocean and Earth Science...

1000pa (Feb. 27, 2011) — Scientists are...

Ancient catastrophic drought leads to question: How severe can climate change become?

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1000pa (Feb. 24, 2011) — How severe can climate change become in a warming world? Worse than anything we've seen in written history, according to results of a study recently appearing in the journal Science.

An international team of scientists led by Curt Stager of Paul Smith's College, New York, has compiled four dozen paleoclimate records from sediment cores in Lake Tanganyika and other locations in Africa.

The records show that one of the...

1000pa (Feb. 24, 2011) — How severe can...

6,000-year climate record suggests longer droughts, drier climate for Pacific Northwest

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1000pa (Feb. 23, 2011) — University of Pittsburgh-led researchers extracted a 6,000-year climate record from a Washington lake that shows that the famously rain-soaked American Pacific Northwest could not only be in for longer dry seasons, but also is unlikely to see a period as wet as the 20th century any time soon.

In a new report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team linked the longer dry spells to the...

1000pa (Feb. 23, 2011) — University of Pittsburgh-led...

Carbon sink at South Pole has grown recently, historical collections reveal

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1000pa (Feb. 22, 2011) — By studying collections of a marine bryozoan that date back to a famous 1901 expedition to the South Pole, researchers have found that those organisms were growing steadily up until 1990, when their growth more than doubled.

The data, reported in the February 22 issue of Current Biology, provide the highest-latitude record of a century of growth and some of the first evidence that polar carbon sinks may be...

1000pa (Feb. 22, 2011) — By studying collections of a...

Mass extinction linked to ancient climate change, new details reveal

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1000pa (Jan. 27, 2011) — About 450 million years ago, Earth suffered the second-largest mass extinction in its history -- the Late Ordovician mass extinction, during which more than 75 percent of marine species died. Exactly what caused this tremendous loss in biodiversity remains a mystery, but now a team led by researchers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) has discovered new details supporting the idea that the mass...

1000pa (Jan. 27, 2011) — About 450 million years...

Putting the dead to work: Conservation paleobiologists dig deep to solve today's ecological, evolutionary questions

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1000pa (Jan. 14, 2011) — Conservation paleobiologists -- scientists who use the fossil record to understand the evolutionary and ecological responses of present-day species to changes in their environment -- are putting the dead to work.

A new review of the research in this emerging field provides examples of how the fossil record can help assess environmental impacts, predict which species will be most vulnerable to environmental changes,...

1000pa (Jan. 14, 2011) — Conservation...

Earth's hot past could be prologue to future climate

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1000pa (Jan. 14, 2011) — The magnitude of climate change during Earth's deep past suggests that future temperatures may eventually rise far more than projected if society continues its pace of emitting greenhouse gases, a new analysis concludes.

The study, by National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) scientist Jeffrey Kiehl, will appear as a "Perspectives" piece in this week's issue of the journal Science.

Building on recent research,...

1000pa (Jan. 14, 2011) — The magnitude of...

Species loss tied to ecosystem collapse and recovery

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1000pa (Jan. 12, 2011) — Geologists at Brown University and the University of Washington have a cautionary tale: Lose enough species in the oceans, and the entire ecosystem could collapse. Looking at two of the greatest mass extinctions in Earth's history, the scientists attribute the ecosystems' collapse to a loss in the variety of species sharing the same space. It took up to 10 million years after the mass extinctions for the ecosystem...

1000pa (Jan. 12, 2011) — Geologists at Brown...

Back to the Dead Sea: Climate change study digs into half a million years of history

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1000pa (Dec. 30, 2010) — They'll drill through four ice ages, epic sandstorms, humankind's migration from Africa to the New World, and the biggest droughts in history. Tel Aviv University is heading an international study that for the first time will dig deep beneath the Dead Sea, 500 meters (about a third of a mile) down under 300 meters (about a fifth of a mile) of water. Drilling with a special rig, the researchers will look back in...

1000pa (Dec. 30, 2010) — They'll drill through four...

Drilling project in the Dead Sea aimed at climate history and history of humankind

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1000pa (Dec. 22, 2010) — About 50 miles from Bethlehem, a drilling project is determining the climate and earthquake activity of the area. Scientists from eight nations are examining the ground below the Dead Sea, by placing a borehole in this deepest basin in the world.

The International Continental Scientific Drilling Program ICDP brings together research teams from Israel, Japan, Norway, Switzerland, the USA and Germany. Researchers from...

1000pa (Dec. 22, 2010) — About 50 miles from...

Ancient forest emerges mummified from the Arctic: Clues to future warming impact

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1000pa (Dec. 16, 2010) — The northernmost mummified forest ever found in Canada is revealing how plants struggled to endure a long-ago global cooling.

Researchers believe the trees -- buried by a landslide and exquisitely preserved 2 to 8 million years ago -- will help them predict how today's Arctic will respond to global warming.

They also suspect that many more mummified forests could emerge across North America as Arctic ice continues to...

1000pa (Dec. 16, 2010) — The northernmost...

Early settlers rapidly transformed New Zealand forests with fire

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1000pa (Dec. 14, 2010) — New research indicates that the speed of early forest clearance following human colonisation of the South Island of New Zealand was much faster and more intense than previously thought.

Charcoal recovered from lake-bed sediment cores show that just a few large fires within 200 years of initial colonization destroyed much of the South Island's lowland forest. Grasslands and shrubland replaced the burnt forest and...

1000pa (Dec. 14, 2010) — New research indicates...

Time running out to save climate record held in unique eastern European Alps glacier

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1000pa (Jan. 6, 2011) — A preliminary look at an ice field atop the highest mountain in the eastern European Alps suggests that the glacier may hold records of ancient climate extending back as much as a thousand years.

Researchers warn, however, that the record may soon be lost as global warming takes its toll on these high-altitude sites, according to a new study in the Journal of Glaciology.

The glacier, Alto dell'Ortles, is the highest...

1000pa (Jan. 6, 2011) — A preliminary look at...

Carbon monoxide trapped in ice cores reveals unexpected trends regarding burning biomass

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1000pa (Dec. 6, 2010) — Scientists studying a column of Antarctic ice spanning 650 years have found evidence for fluctuations in biomass burning--the consumption of wood, peat and other materials in wildfires, cooking fires and communal fires--in the Southern Hemisphere.

The record, focused primarily on carbon monoxide (CO), differs substantially from the record in the Northern Hemisphere, suggesting changes may be necessary for...

1000pa (Dec. 6, 2010) — Scientists studying a column...

Global sea-level rise at the end of the last Ice Age interrupted by rapid 'jumps'

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1000pa (Dec. 4, 2010) — Southampton researchers have estimated that sea-level rose by an average of about 1 metre per century at the end of the last Ice Age, interrupted by rapid 'jumps' during which it rose by up to 2.5 metres per century. The findings, published in Global and Planetary Change, will help unravel the responses of ocean circulation and climate to large inputs of ice-sheet meltwater to the world ocean.

Global sea level rose...

1000pa (Dec. 4, 2010) — Southampton researchers...

Rainforest collapse drove reptile evolution

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1000pa (Nov. 29, 2010) — Global warming devastated tropical rainforests 300 million years ago. Now scientists report the unexpected discovery that this event triggered an evolutionary burst among reptiles -- and inadvertently paved the way for the rise of dinosaurs, 100 million years later.

This event happened during the Carboniferous Period. At that time, Europe and North America lay on the equator and were covered by steamy tropical...

1000pa (Nov. 29, 2010) — Global warming devastated...

Ancient insects preferred warmer climates

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1000pa (Nov. 25, 2010) — For millions of years, insects and plants have coevolved -- leaf-eaters adapting to the modifications of their hosts and plants changing to protect themselves from herbivory. The abundance and diversity of both insects and plants have varied depending on changes in climate. However, according to a study published in the November issue of Ecological Monographs, a journal of the Ecological Society of America,...

1000pa (Nov. 25, 2010) — For millions of years, insects...

First Bird

First Bird
What was the earliest known bird?

Unexplained artifacts

unexplained artifacts
The 10 most amazing unexplained artifacts

Evolution

Timeline: Human Evolution

Biggest Dinosaurs

The 10 Biggest Dinosaurs

Fossils 

Fossil Formation: How Do Fossils Form?
 

Book review

Dinosaurs Encyclopedia

Book Review

Dinosaurs: The Most Complete, Up-to-Date Encyclopedia for Dinosaur Lovers of All Ages ... WRITTEN BY A PROFESSIONAL paleontologist specifically for young readers, this guide to the Dinosauria is packed...