Global Warming, 65 Million B.C.

Two New Dinosaurs Discovered in Antarctica

John Pickrell for National Geographic News
March 9, 2004

Working in some of the planet’s harshest conditions, fossil hunters have found two completely new species of dinosaur in Antarctica. This increases to eight the number of dinosaur species found on the perpetually frozen southern landmass.

Little is known about the dinosaurs that once roamed what is now Antarctica. All fossils found so far are from the margins of coastal islands or exposed mountain rock faces—the few places free of a thick ice layer. But the continent was not always so cold.

Antarctica has sat at much the same latitude for the last hundred million years. But during the Cretaceous it enjoyed a warmer, lusher climate, similar to that of the U.S. Pacific Northwest today. (The Cretaceous period started 144 million years ago and ended 65 million years ago.)

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