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The aftermath of megafaunal extinction: Ecosystem transformation in Pleistocene Australia

Rule, Susan; Brook, Barry W; Turney, C S M; Kershaw, Arnold Peter; Johnson, Christopher N.; Haberle, Simon


Giant vertebrates dominated many Pleistocene ecosystems. Many were herbivores, and their sudden extinction in prehistory could have had large ecological impacts. We used a high-resolution 130,000-year environmental record to help resolve the cause and reconstruct the ecological consequences of extinction of Australia's megafauna. Our results suggest that human arrival rather than climate caused megafaunal extinction, which then triggered replacement of mixed rainforest by sclerophyll vegetation...[Show more]

CollectionsANU Research Publications
Date published: 2012
Type: Journal article
Source: Science
DOI: 10.1126/science.1214261


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