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The mass extinctions of forams correlates with other major events in the Earth's history.  The Earth has a cyclic pattern that goes from Ice Ages to normal.  In times that are not associated with ice ages, the polar caps are not completely frozen and increases the worldwide water levels.  This change in water level, causes the depth of the ocean to change also.  The fossil record also indicates how the foram's environment changes throughout these times.  Forams must migrate or become extinct if it lives during a time when it's environment changes.  Glaciers melting during the Permian is a probable cause for the extinction of forams, because of the rapid warming the was associated with this time.

Benthic forams secrete their shells from calcium, magnesium, and oxygen
dissolved in sea water. (Photo courtesy USGS)

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