How badly were animal populations in Europe impacted by mass extinctions around 65 million years ago?



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    The mass extinction event that occurred about 65 million years ago wiped out many plant and animal species around the world – including every species of dinosaur except for those which eventually gave rise to modern birds.  However, not all parts of the globe were affected equally.  The mass extinction is thought to have been caused mainly by a giant comet which hit the Earth, landing near the modern-day Yucatan Peninsula.  Areas very close to this region, like North America, seem to have suffered most from the impact.  Plants, and likely smaller animals in Europe do not seem to have been as severely affected as those in the Americas.  However, the comet impact probably threw enough fine particulate matter into the atmosphere to darken the skies all over the world for years, leading to a die-off of plant life that in turn wiped out many animals.  It seems that in Europe, many plants were able to recover from this temporary die-off in a relatively short amount of time.  Still, it lasted long enough to wipe out Europe’s dinosaurs by depriving them of food. 

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