Volcanoes saw species survive ice ages: study
Published on Mar 11, 2014 2:52 PM
SYDNEY (AFP) - The steam and heat from volcanoes allowed species of plants and animals to survive past ice ages, a study showed on Tuesday, offering help for scientists dealing with climate change.
An international team of researchers said their analysis helped explain a long-running mystery about how some species thrived, often in isolation, in areas covered by glaciers, with volcanoes acting as an oasis of life during long cold periods.
"Volcanic steam can melt large ice caves under the glaciers, and it can be tens of degrees warmer in there than outside," said Ceridwen Fraser, the joint team leader from the Australian National University.
"Caves and warm steam fields would have been great places for species to hang out during ice ages.
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