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August 2009 Geology and GSA Today media highlights
Date:7/31/2009

amel, American mastodon, American lion, the short-faced bear and the helmeted musk-ox. But how did this remote Arctic region support such a diverse array of grazing megafauna? This is the question addressed by Duane Froese of the University of Alberta and his international team of colleagues. They focus on the Klondike region of Yukon, one of North America's most productive localities for the recovery of late Pleistocene mammal fossils. By using numerous volcanic ash beds that characterize the fossil-rich strata to determine the age and correlations of disparate rock layers, they have been able to demonstrate that, unlike today's Arctic tundra, Beringia consisted of a well-drained, vegetated steppe that was continuously replenished by wind-blown loess. Having now developed a well-constrained stratigraphic record of Beringia, Froese and his team hope to further resolve questions concerning the relationships between mammals, glacial vegetation, and Pleistocene climate.


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Contact: Christa Stratton
cstratton@geosociety.org
303-357-1093
Geological Society of America
Source:Eurekalert

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