Navigation Links
Fossil palm beetles 'hind-cast' 50-million-year-old winters
Date:5/13/2014

Fifty-million-year-old fossil beetles that fed only on palm seeds are giving Simon Fraser University biologists Bruce Archibald and Rolf Mathewes new information about ancient climates.

According to their research, published online this week in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, these fossil beetles indicate that during a period of global warming in the geological past, there were mild, frost-free winters extended even in the uplands of ancient western North America.

Working with co-authors Geoffrey Morse of the University of San Diego, California, and David Greenwood of Manitoba's Brandon University, researchers used fossil beetles to determine winter temperatures where they couldn't place a thermometerin the 50-million-year-old uplands of British Columbia and Washington.

The key to their study was finding a particular group of beetles that only feed on palms.

"The natural distribution of palms is limited today to regions without significant frost days, which their seeds and seedlings can't survive," Archibald explains. "A cooler upland with palms indicates a specific climate type, where a temperate average yearly temperaturerather like Vancouver todayhad warmer winters where palms can complete their lifecycles."

But since detecting palm fossils is difficult, the research duo developed a new technique they used the beetle fossils to test for the palms' presence.

Understanding more about these temperate, yet mild winter climates by looking to the deep past may help show how natural communities are impacted by climate change, says Archibald. "We see this happening today in significant wayswarm the winters a little, and you get big changes, such as the explosion of mountain pine beetle populations that strongly affect forests and the people and economies that depend on them.

"Using the fossil record to understand climates of the deep past that had significant similarities to climates that we are now encountering may help forearm us with knowledge that will be important to our future as we increasingly experience the effects of global warming."


'/>"/>

Contact: Bruce Archibald
sba48@sfu.ca
778-782-9017
Simon Fraser University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Protecting living fossil trees
2. Dinosaur fossil: Even specialized predators didnt turn down free meals
3. Seismic zones, river deltas, landslides, fossil reptiles, and more new Geology science
4. Buy coal? New analysis shows purchasing fossil fuel deposits best way to fight climate change
5. Anthropologist finds explanation for hominin brain evolution in famous fossil
6. Ancient giant turtle fossil revealed
7. Scientists find gold-plated fossil solution
8. Human-like spine morphology found in aquatic eel fossil
9. Work starts on fossil fuel free cargo ship set to transform shipping industry
10. Fossil turtle from Colombia round like car tire
11. Fossil egg discovered in Lleida (Spain) links dinosaurs to modern birds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/28/2017)... DORTMUND, Germany , February 28, 2017 ... ... Amsterdam from 14 to 16 March, ... to destination, and show how seamless travel is a real benefit ... Materna has added biometrics to their passenger touch point solutions to ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... 25, 2017  Securus Technologies, a leading provider ... public safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring, announces the ... "Too often, too many offenders return ... jails are trying to tackle this ongoing problem ... and family members. While significant steps are underway, Securus ...
(Date:2/21/2017)... and PORTLAND, Ore. , Feb. ... the Avamere Family of Companies (Avamere Health Services, Infinity ... a six-month research study that will apply the power ... at senior living and health centers. By analyzing data ... to gain insights into physical and environmental conditions, and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... Md. , March 23, 2017  Northwest ... developing DCVax® personalized immune therapies for solid tumor ... the $7.5 million financing it announced last Friday, ... sold to several institutional investors securities totaling 28,843,692 ... per share, and 10,000,000 shares of Class C ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... PARK, Calif., March 23, 2017  BioPharmX Corporation ... products for the dermatology market, today reported financial ... 31, 2017, and will provide an update on ... the year. "We are pleased to ... year for BioPharmX," said President Anja Krammer. "We ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... March 23, 2017 NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage  ... Cancer ... significant strain on health care systems, in terms of costs ... so too does the development of innovative and efficient therapies ... Among the many types of cancer treatments, a growing number ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... In today,s pre-market research, Stock-Callers.com ... Biotech industry: Sangamo Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: SGMO), Eyegate Pharmaceuticals ... and Regulus Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: RGLS ). ... its rating on Pharmaceuticals/Biotechnology to "Overweight" from "Market Weight." Learn more ... ...
Breaking Biology Technology: