Italians Find ‘Forest’ in Antartica

Italian researchers have discovered a fossilized forest in Antarctica’s Allan Hills.

Four scientists from the University of Siena operating under the Italian National Antarctic Research Program, found numerous tree trunks dating back to the Triassic period, around 250 million years ago.

Burned areas found on the trunks raised intriguing questions and theories.

“Many were charred on the side exposed on the surface and in addition they were all aligned,” wrote Franco Talarico, a member of the group. “Instead, other trunks were completely charred and the large quantity of carbonized fossilized trunks in all probability demonstrates the spread of huge fires that would have completely destroyed the Triassic forest over a vast area,” he continued. The origin of the fires remains a mystery, although the scientists say they could have been caused by volcanic eruptions or the impact of an asteroid.

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