Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Extinctions update Climate change didn't kill megafauna
AUSTRALIA'S giant prehistoric animals were killed off by humans, not climate change, new research indicates.
Ninety per cent of Australia's so-called megafauna - prehistoric animals such as giant goannas, three-metre tall kangaroos and rhino-sized marsupials - died out within 20,000 years of human arrival.

But the lack of data from the years preceding human arrival has made it difficult to determine whether environmental changes or human hunting and habitat destruction killed off the giant animals.