Thirteen trees over 260 million years old are fossil remains of a forest in the ice expanses of the Transantarctic Mountains, that is, a forest of the late Permian Period, before the first dinosaurs , when Antarctica was still at the South Pole.
The finding was made during an expedition to McIntyre Head .
According to Erik Gulbranson , a paleoecologist and professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee:
People have known fossils in Antarctica since the Robert Falcon Scott expedition of 1910-12. However, most of Antarctica has not yet been explored. Sometimes, you could be the first person to climb a particular mountain.
This finding may give clues about how plants were different from the current ones, as well as the keys to extinction that there was of the Permian-Triassic, the greatest extinction massive history, since the Earth changed quickly from the ice house to the greenhouse conditions: 90% of the species disappeared .
Once, Antarctica was part of Gondwana, the supercontinent covering the Southern Hemisphere that also includes the current South America, Africa, India, Australia and the Arabian Peninsula.