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Close to the end of the last ice age there was a sudden disappearance of many mammalian species which some paleontologists say was the most severe since the disappearance of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. In North America 95 percent of the megafauna became extinct, these being predominantly mammals having body weights greater than 25 to 50 kilograms.
LaViolette's book Earth Under Fire, which he first published in 1997 and later updated in 2005, relates stories and ancient legends from around the world describing how the Earth had once been burned by the Sun, an event that was said to have brought about a world conflagration and even caused genetic mutations in animals.
Some legends describe how survivors took shelter for several days in a cave or underground dwelling.
Paleontologists note that Clovis paleoIndian campsites in North America suddenly terminate at one point and LaViolette notes that this Clovis end date either immediately preceded or coincided with the date of the 12,837 years BP super SPE.