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A late Triassic-era rausuchian, one of the rival reptile lineages who lost out to the dinosaurs. Dmitry Bogdonav/Wikimedia Commons hide caption

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Dmitry Bogdonav/Wikimedia Commons

A giant kauri tree grows in Waipoua Forest in Northland, New Zealand. Trees like this one that fell long ago and were preserved for thousands of years are helping researchers discern fluctuations in the Earth's magnetic poles. Kim Westerskov/Getty Images hide caption

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Kim Westerskov/Getty Images

Ancient Trees Show When The Earth's Magnetic Field Last Flipped Out

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The frog Hyla sanchiangensis from eastern China is a descendant of one of three lineages that made it through Earth's last mass extinction 66 million years ago to flourish worldwide today. Peng Zhang, Sun Yat-Sen University hide caption

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Peng Zhang, Sun Yat-Sen University

Paleontologist Peter Ward speaking on the TED stage. Andrew Heavens/TED hide caption

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Andrew Heavens/TED

Peter Ward: Are We Headed Into Another Mass Extinction?

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