Warm at the Top

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  18 Dec 1998:
Vol. 282, Issue 5397, pp. 2149
DOI: 10.1126/science.282.5397.2149b

The climate during the Late Cretaceous was anomalously warm at times; dinosaurs could be found in Antarctica, and the Arctic region contained abundant plants (see the Perspective by Huber). Tarduno et al. (p. 2241) describe a vertebrate fossil assemblage from Axel Heiberg Island in the high Canadian Arctic. This assemblage includes fish, turtles, and champsosaurs, a large, nonmigratory crocodile-like predator. The assemblage implies that polar temperatures were high (perhaps exceeding 14° Celsius on average) about 92 to 86 million years ago, a period that followed the occurrence of extensive global basaltic volcanism.

Navigate This Article