End-Permian stratigraphic timeline applied to the timing of marine and non-marine extinctions

Michael R. Rampino, Yoram Eshet-Alkalai, Athanasios Koutavas, Sedelia Rodriguez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A latest Permian timeline (251.9 Ma) can be constructed from the perspectives of: a global nickel spike attributed to emissions from the coeval Siberian flood-basalt eruptions, the correlative end-Permian marine mass extinction (EPME), a transition from reversed to normal paleomagnetism, and a negative anomaly in δ13Ccarb and δ13Corg. In a number of marine and non-marine localities, this timeline is also correlated (to within ≤30 ky) with palynological evidence for the latest Permian destruction of terrestrial vegetation and the accompanying short-lived global fungal (Reduviasporonites) event. This correlation suggests that devastation in marine and non-marine environments was essentially coeval at a time marked by hyperthermal conditions and anoxic oceans. We utilized this proposed timeline to estimate the relative timing of the extinction of latest Permian vertebrates in the Karoo Basin of South Africa. In several sections in the Karoo, the LAD of the therapsid Dicynodon, is correlated with the proposed timeline. In the Carlton Heights section in the Karoo we estimate that the palynological changes and the fungal event occurred within ≤30 ky of the LAD of Dicynodon. Further sampling in the Karoo and other Permian–Triassic non-marine basins would help to clarify the relative timing of the global marine extinctions, plant devastation and the disappearance of non-marine vertebrates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)577-589
Number of pages13
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Ireland Ltd Elsevier B.V. and Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, CAS


  • Marine extinctions
  • Non-marine extinctions
  • Permian
  • Triassic


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