Mass Extinctions and Their Aftermath / Edition 1

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This is the first review of all the major mass extinctions in the history of life. It covers all groups of organisms - plant, animal, terrestrial, and marine - that have gone extinct alongside the geological and sedimentological evidence for environmental changes during the biotic crises. All proposed extinction mechanisms - climate change, meteorite impact, volcanisms - are critically assessed. The demise of the dinosaurs has been amply discussed, but this is the first time that this event has been put into the proper context of other extinction events.

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Editorial Reviews

Complements the many popular and often sensational accounts, multi-author volumes, and studies on a particular mass extinction with a focuses scientific investigation of all the known mass extinctions with sufficient technical detail to excite geologists and paleontologists. Discusses the Big Five, one late in each of the Ordovician, Devonian, Permian, Triassic, and the famous Cretaceous that saw the end of the Dinosaurs; and minor mass extinctions from the early Cambrian the Cenozoic. Also examines the current paleontological, geological, and sedimentological evidence of environmental change; and sets out the cases for causes by climate change, marine regressions, asteroid or comet impact, anoxia, and volcanic eruptions. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198549161
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 12/4/1997
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 328
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.60 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

University of Birmingham

University of Leeds

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Table of Contents

1 The study of mass extinctions 1
2 Extinctions in the early history of the Metazoa 24
3 Latest Ordovician extinctions: one disaster after another 39
4 Crises of the Late Devonian: the Kellwasser and Hangenberg events 62
5 Palaeozoic nemesis 94
6 Extinctions within and at the close of the Triassic 142
7 Minor extinctions of the Jurassic 161
8 Minor mass extinctions of the marine Cretaceous 170
9 Death at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary 184
10 Cenozoic extinctions 223
11 The causes of mass extinctions 242
References 253
Index 309
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