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by KaralaL
Last updated 6 years ago

Earth Sciences

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During this period, the area north of the tropics was almost entirely ocean, and most of the world's land was collected into the southern supercontinent Gondwana.


488,3 - 443,7 million years ago

The Ordovician was named by the British geologist Charles Lapworth in 1879. He took the name from an ancient Celtic tribe, the Ordovices, renowned for its resistance to Roman domination.

The Ordovician Biodiversity Radiation

These first steps toward life on land were cut short by the freezing conditions that gripped the planet toward the end of the Ordovician.

From the Lower to Middle Ordovician, the Earth experienced a milder climate - the weather was warm and the atmosphere contained a lot of moisture. Sea levels rising as much as 1,970 feet (600 meters) above those of today.

There is also evidence that the first primitive plants began to appear on the previously barren land.

When Gondwana finally settled on the South Pole during the Upper Ordovician, massive glaciers formed, causing shallow seas to drain and sea levels to drop. This likely caused the second largest mass extinctions of all time that characterize the end of the Ordovician in which 60% of all marine invertebrate genera and 25% of all families went extinct.

The Ordovician is best known for its diverse marine invertebrates, including cephalopods, primitive fish, graptolites, trilobites, brachiopods, corals, crinoids and the conodonts (early vertebrates).


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