How deep sea creatures survived the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs
Some deep sea creatures somehow managed to survive the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.
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Now, researchers at Cardiff University believe they've figured out why.
See images of unusual sea creatures:
A study recently published in the journal Geology suggests that certain algae and bacteria lived past the impact as well, providing a slow but steady supply of food for lifeforms who lived near the seafloor.
According to a summary of the findings, "The team were able to draw these conclusions by analyzing new data from the chemical composition of the fossilized shells of sea surface and seafloor organisms from that period, taken from drilling cores from the ocean floor in the South Atlantic. This gave the researchers an idea of the flux, or movement, of organic matter from the sea surface to the seafloor in the aftermath of the asteroid strike, and led them to conclude that a slow trickle of food was constantly being delivered to the deep ocean."
Additionally, the researchers have surmised that it only took 1.7 million years for food supplies to rebound completely—nearly half the time of prior estimates.