Climate and seasons are among the most decisive factors in human life. Some believe that it is best to live in a warm climate. According to some, the colder the weather, the better. What kind of climate, what season and what kind of weather people like depends on many different factors. But, probably, no one would like to live in an ice age! It is not difficult to understand the reason for this situation. The Ice Age refers to periods when the world was simultaneously dominated by many different elements that made life almost impossible. Frosts, huge masses of ice, disappearing plants, animals … But, despite all its horror, it’s hard to say that the ice age was not interesting! Here are 13 amazing Ice Age facts you may not have heard of…

1. There are certain characteristics that an “epoch” must have in order to be called an ice age.

Freezing temperatures alone or huge masses of ice are not enough to call the period an ice age. The Ice Age refers to periods when the earth was covered by huge continental glaciers and sub-zero temperatures spread over thousands and sometimes millions of years.

2. The last ice age caused the “almost” extinction of worms in North America.

3. There have been 5 great ice ages so far.

The last great ice age was between 40,000 and 10,000 years ago.

4. There are many factors that can cause the start of an ice age.

One such element is acid rain! Volcanic eruptions in the Appalachian Mountains in North America 460 million years ago released incredible amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The intense release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere caused acid rain, and acid rain marked the beginning of the ice age!

5. Changes in the Earth’s Movement Could Lead to an Ice Age

As you know, “axle tilt” is very effective in climates. However, the angle between the Earth’s axis of rotation and the axis of the orbit, which is expressed as axial tilt, is not as stable as we think. Therefore, a serious change in the normal motion of the Earth can cause a decrease in global air temperature and even the beginning of an ice age.

6. The first great ice age on Earth occurred 2 billion years ago.

glacial period

The “cold period”, which is believed to have begun due to volcanic activity 250 million years old, is called the “Huronian glaciation” or “Huronian Ice Age”. Scientists state that during this period the Earth was almost completely covered with glaciers.

7. The Karoo glaciation, which began about 360 million years ago, was caused by “plants”!

Plants dominated the Earth millions of years ago! Plants that cover almost the entire earth have caused a significant decrease in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and a significant increase in oxygen. Accordingly, the air temperature gradually decreased and the Karoo Ice Age began.

8. Continental formations or tectonic movements can also cause an ice age to start!

glacial period

A major change took place in the “ocean currents” when the land formed thousands of years ago, called the “Isthmus of Panama”, separated the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans from each other. Due to this change, climate change has occurred in many regions. A significant drop in temperature in the ensuing process triggered the onset of the Ice Age.

9. The last ice age happened 20,000 years ago.

glacial period

During this period, 8 percent of the Earth’s surface and a quarter of its land were covered by glaciers. During the last ice age, most of the plant species, especially in Europe, disappeared. Africa became drier than during this period.

10. During the last ice age, the average temperature on Earth was 7 °C.

glacial period

11. Many species became extinct during the Ice Age. However, many living species have emerged.

glacial period

Especially large creatures such as mammoths, commonly referred to as “megafauna”, survived quite successfully during the time when the earth was covered with glaciers. However, it is believed that many large creatures belonging to different species have disappeared due to climate and vegetation changes due to the end of the ice age.

12. Homo sapiens spread to Earth during the ice age 300,000 years ago.

glacial period

Homo sapiens left Africa during the ice age and dispersed to different parts of the world. Homo sapiens, who managed to adapt to the harsh conditions of life in the Ice Age, thereby guaranteed his existence in the world. However, in different periods, when the Earth was covered with glaciers, different types of people died out.

Traces of the ice age can be found to this day.

glacial period

After the last ice age ended thousands of years ago, the Earth gradually took on its present form. On the other hand, although we do not live in an ice age, traces of the ice age can be seen in the wild.

For example, the “La Brea Tar Pits” in California, USA are home to the remains of many wild animals that disappeared during the last ice age. However, Loch Ness in Scotland is largely made up of glacial waters that melted away thousands of years ago. In a word, traces of the ice age that took place thousands of years ago can be found today in various parts of the world.

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