Massive Volcanic Eruptions Triggered the Dinosaur Age
Intense volcanic eruptions, along with a devastating meteor strike, likely contributed to the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs around 66.5 million years ago. Now new research shows that volcanic eruptions at the end of the Triassic period (252–201 million years ago) triggered the Dinosaur Age, meaning these animals were bookended by some of Earth’s most extreme and fiery conditions.
The new evidence for volcanism, reported in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, corroborates earlier studies suggesting multiple volcanic eruptions occurred over a long period approximately 200–201 million years ago.
If Triassic animals like the giant croc-resembling reptiles were not directly burned to a crisp, they would have then experienced horrific climatic conditions challenging, and then ultimately ending, their existence.