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Leaf cuticle thickness can infer leaf mass area (LMA) of fossil plants. Gymnosperms from East Greenland show forests of low LMA taxa being replaced by high LMA taxa across the Triassic–Jurassic boundary as a result of CO2-induced global warming.
The Pliocene marine megafaunal extinctions caused functional diversity loss, which was not mitigated by newly evolved taxa in the Pleistocene. This paper points towards an abrupt loss of productive coastal habitats as a key extinction driver.
New palaeoecological data from New Guinea reveal that climatic change at the Holocene boundary is unlikely to have driven early agriculture in the region. More nuanced understanding of how humans responded to past climate change could better inform our responses in the future.
Plant–insect interactions reveal rapid recovery of terrestrial ecosystems in the Southern Hemisphere after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction, at more than twice the rate of contemporaneous Northern Hemisphere ecosystems.
Large glacial–interglacial fluctuations occurred during the late Palaeozoic. Geochemical and fossil data show these cycles were marked by coincident shifts in the carbon cycle and terrestrial biosphere.