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17 April 2012
Extinction of Australian megafauna explained

The story of an incoming population obliterating the indigenous population is not a new one. New studies in Australia have confirmed that the original incoming first Australians, over 40,000 years ago, managed to hunt the existing megafauna to extinction. The team which has published these findings researched the fossilised dung left behind by these giants.
     They analysed the spores of fungi trapped in the dung and compared them to spores which had been locked into sedimentary layers in swamps and lakes. This comparison showed clearly that the megafauna populations were virtually wiped out in approximately 40,000 BCE, at the time of the human influx. This swift depopulation also caused massive changes in the flora, as most of the now extinct animals had been herbivores. As with most published studies, there are detractors who question the findings.

Edited from Past Horizons (4 April 2012)

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