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Article

Cretaceous Dinosaurs across Alaska Show the Role of Paleoclimate in Structuring Ancient Large-Herbivore Populations

1
Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX 75275, USA
2
Department of Geosciences, and Geophysical Institute, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK 99775, USA
3
Hokkaido University Museum, Hokkaido University, Kita 10, Nishi 8, Kita-Ku, Sapporo 060-0810, Hokkaido, Japan
4
Department of Geology, The University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jesus Martinez-Frias and Pierre Pellenard
Geosciences 2022, 12(4), 161; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12040161
Received: 17 February 2022 / Revised: 17 March 2022 / Accepted: 30 March 2022 / Published: 2 April 2022
The partially correlative Alaskan dinosaur-bearing Prince Creek Formation (PCF), North Slope, lower Cantwell Formation (LCF), Denali National Park, and Chignik Formation (CF), Aniakchak National Monument, form an N–S transect that, together, provides an unparalleled opportunity to examine an ancient high-latitude terrestrial ecosystem. The PCF, 75–85° N paleolatitude, had a Mean Annual Temperature (MAT) of ~5–7 °C and a Mean Annual Precipitation (MAP) of ~1250 mm/year. The LCF, ~71° N paleolatitude, had a MAT of ~7.4 °C and MAP of ~661 mm/year. The CF, ~57° N paleolatitude, had a MAT of ~13 °C and MAP of ~1090 mm/year. The relative abundances of the large-bodied herbivorous dinosaurs, hadrosaurids and ceratopsids, vary along this transect, suggesting that these climatic differences (temperature and precipitation) played a role in the ecology of these large-bodied herbivores of the ancient north. MAP played a more direct role in their distribution than MAT, and the seasonal temperature range may have played a secondary role. View Full-Text
Keywords: hadrosaurs; ceratopsians; Arctic; ancient Arctic; terrestrial ecosystems; ecosystem reconstruction hadrosaurs; ceratopsians; Arctic; ancient Arctic; terrestrial ecosystems; ecosystem reconstruction
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fiorillo, A.R.; McCarthy, P.J.; Kobayashi, Y.; Suarez, M.B. Cretaceous Dinosaurs across Alaska Show the Role of Paleoclimate in Structuring Ancient Large-Herbivore Populations. Geosciences 2022, 12, 161. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12040161

AMA Style

Fiorillo AR, McCarthy PJ, Kobayashi Y, Suarez MB. Cretaceous Dinosaurs across Alaska Show the Role of Paleoclimate in Structuring Ancient Large-Herbivore Populations. Geosciences. 2022; 12(4):161. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12040161

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fiorillo, Anthony R., Paul J. McCarthy, Yoshitsugu Kobayashi, and Marina B. Suarez. 2022. "Cretaceous Dinosaurs across Alaska Show the Role of Paleoclimate in Structuring Ancient Large-Herbivore Populations" Geosciences 12, no. 4: 161. https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences12040161

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