The Great Dying

ScienceDaily: Permian-Triassic extinction event

The Permian-Triassic (P-T or PT) extinction event, sometimes informally called the Great Dying, was an extinction event that occurred approximately 251.0 million years ago (mya), forming the boundary between the Permian and Triassic geologic periods. It was the Earth’s most severe extinction event, with about 90 percent of all marine species and 70 percent of terrestrial vertebrate species going extinct. For some time after the event, fungal species were the dominant form of terrestrial life.
Many reasons for the P-T effect have been cited including plate tectonicks, an impact event (a comet or an asteroid or some other heavenly body), a supernova, extreme volcanism, the release of frozen methane from the ocean beds causing greenhouse effect or a combination of all these factors.

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