The Upper Triassic is the last epoch in the Triassic period. It began 237 million years ago, and ended 201.3 million years ago. It was after the Middle Triassic epoch, and before the Lower Jurassic epoch.
Many early dinosaur species appeared for the first time during the Upper Triassic. These included Plateosaurus, Coelophysis, and Eoraptor. The discovery of Herrerasaurus and Saurosuchus makes it quite clear that the dinosaurs were taking hold of the land environments.
At the end of the Upper Triassic some event or events caused the extinction of many animal species worldwide. This was the end–Triassic extinction event. It was similar to the more famous event that lead to the extinction of the dinosaurs. No one knows for sure what caused the event.
Carnian pluvial event[change | change source]
Although the Triassic period was, in general, a dry period with the inland areas often being deserts, the Upper Triassic epoch saw a big change.
The Carnian Pluvial Event (CPE) was a major global climate change and biotic turnover with many extinctions. It was early in the Upper Triassic, about 230 million years ago. Shifts in carbon and oxygen isotopes suggest a global warming.
High extinction rates occurred among ammonoids, conodonts, bryozoa and crinoids. Major evolutionary innovations followed the CPE. The dinosaurs became established. In the seas there were calcareous nannofossils and scleractinian corals.
References[change | change source]
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