Palaeos: Mesozoic Palaeos Mesozoic Era
Mesozoic Era Mesozoic - 1

The Mesozoic Era - 1

The Mesozoic Era of the Phanerozoic Eon: 251 to 65.5 million years ago

Lasting little more than half the duration of the Paleozoic, the Mesozoic was a spectacular time. The generalized archosaurian reptiles of the Triassic gave way to the dinosaurs, a terrestrial megafauna the like of which the Earth has not seen before or since. While dinosaurs dominated the land, diverse sea-reptiles ruled the oceans, and invertebrates, especially ammonites, were extremely diverse. Pterosaurs and later birds took to the sky. Mammals however remained small and insignificant. Climatic conditions remained warm and tropical worldwide. The supercontinent of Pangea broke up into Laurasia and Gondwana, with different dinosaurian faunas evolving on each. During this era modern forms of corals, insects, new fishes and finally flowering plants evolved. At the end of the Cretaceous period the dinosaurs and many other animals abruptly died out, quite likely the result of an asteroid impact and associated extensive volcanism MAK020914


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