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Deciduousness in mesic, broad-leaved plants occurred in disturbed, middle-latitude environments during the Late Cretaceous. Only in polar environments in the Late Cretaceous was the deciduous element dominant, although of low diversity. The terminal Cretaceous event resulted in wide-spread selection for plants of deciduous habit and diversification of deciduous taxa, thus leaving a lasting imprint on Northern Hemisphere vegetation. Various environmental factors have played important roles in subsequent diversification of mesic, broad-leaved deciduous taxa and in origination and decline of broad-leaved deciduous forests. Low diversity and rarity of mesic deciduous plants in the post-Cretaceous of the Southern Hemisphere indicate that the inferred 'impact winter' of the terminal Cretaceous event had little effect on Southern Hemisphere vegetation and climate. -Author
Additional Publication Details
Late Cretaceous- Cenozoic history of deciduousness and the terminal Cretaceous event.