Recent happenings in paleontology

Brenen Wynd, former Wilson Lab undergrad and lab manager (now PhD candidate at Virginia Tech), along with Dr. Greg Wilson Mantilla and Wilson Mantilla Lab alum Dr. Dave DeMar, Jr. publish their study on the diversity of sharks and rays from the Hell Creek Formation, leading up to the Cretaceous–Paleogene mass extinction!

Shark teeth (Fig.5) from Wynd et al. 2020. Scale bars equal 1 mm.

Check out new research on the Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinction using data from a fossil locality, Hall’s Cave, in Texas here! Their research suggests that climate changed affected this local ecosystem, but may not have been the sole driver of the disappearance of large mammals at the end Pleistocene.

Read about recent research discussing the relative roles of Deccan volcanism and the Chicxulub asteroid impact as kill mechanisms for the Cretaceous–Paleogene mass extinction! These researchers use both fossil occurrence data and paleoclimate models to support that the asteroid impact was the main driver of the non-avian dinosaur extinction.

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