Study: Extinction before rise of dinosaurs occurred 200M years ago

03/22/2013 | LiveScience.com

Huge volcanic eruptions may have been responsible for killing off nearly half of the Earth's living species more than 200 million years ago, according to a study published in Science. The eruptions, which spanned from present-day New Jersey to Morocco, led to the End-Triassic Extinction in which a number of species died, making way for the dinosaurs. While scientists had long speculated that volcanoes and the ensuing climate change may have been responsible for the mass extinction, this study was the first to be able to date it to 201.56 million years ago.

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