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No. 30: Nov-Dec 1983

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The Arctic Womb

"Magnetostratigraphic correlation of Eureka Sound Formation in the Canadian High Arctic reveals profound difference between the time of appearance of fossil land plants and vertebrates in the Arctic and in mid-northern latitudes. Latest Cretaceous plant fossils in the Arctic predate mid-latitude occurrences by as much as 18 million years, while typical Eocene vertebrate fossils appear some 2 to 4 million years early."

(Hickey, Leo J., et al; "Arctic Terrestrial Biota: Paleomagnetic Evidence of Age Disparity with Mid-Northern Latitudes During the Late Cretaceous and Early Tertiary," Science, 221:1153, 1983.)

Comment. The anomaly here is in the vision of the high Arctic lands basking in the warm sun busily evolving new life forms well in advance of their appearance in lands closer to the Equator. What happened to the earth's axial tilt. These fecund polar territories should have been engulfed in darkness almost half of the year -- hardly an environment for precocious plant evolution. Further, trees found buried in the Arc-tic muck could never have grown where found due to the long polar darkness.

From Science Frontiers #30, NOV-DEC 1983. 1983-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987