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Cenozoic Era

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alexis millan

on 28 February 2013

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Transcript of Cenozoic Era

Cenozoic Era Alexis Millan KT Extinction Pleistocene Holocene The Pleistocene is the epoch which lasted from about 2.6 million years ago to about 11,700 years ago. The Pleistocene ice age or current ice age occurred at this time, which covered Antarctica and parts of Greenland with permanent ice sheets. Glaciers also advanced and retreated in North America and Europe, parts of South America and Asia. When glaciers advanced south, so did plants and animals reduced living space and food availability. A major extinction event of large mammals like mammoths, saber-toothed cats, ground sloths, Irish elk, and cave bears which began late in the Pleistocene and continued into the Holocene. Neanderthals also came into existence and then went extinct. The Holocene or the "Age of Man" is the last 11,700 years to now. It follows the last glacial period, and because of this the ice melt caused world sea levels to rise about 35 m in the early part of the Holocene. Animals and plants have not evolved much during this time, and are essentially like they are today. It has witnessed all of humanity's recorded history and the rise and fall of all its civilizations. Humanity has greatly influenced the Holocene environment; while all organisms influence their environments to some level, few have ever changed the globe as much as our species is doing. Paleocene Eocene During the Eocene epoch, the first grasses appeared. These grasses served as a food resource and provided a shelter for many animals. Plants like shrubs and trees also thrived during this epoch. Oligocene The Oligocene epoch is considered the time for transition from the tropical Eocene to the more modern ecosystems of the Miocene. The Grande Coupure was an event that happened during this time. It is characterized by the replacement of European fauna into Asian fauna. Grasslands and angiosperms expanded throughout the world; while tropical forests were replaced by temperate woodland forests. It was also during this time that the first human like ancestors, the hominids, appeared in Africa. Miocene The Miocene is a long 18 million years, and it marks the transition from the prehistoric world to a pseudo-modern world. A major expansion of grasslands occurred; forests declined in the cooler and dryer climate of this epoch, which drove the selection and radiation of large herbivores. Mammals like wolves, horses and deer and some birds also evolved to closely resemble forms that are alive today. Pliocene The Pliocene epoch's climate was relatively cool and dry as in modern times. These modern climates reduced tropical vegetation and shrank tropical forest to a band near the equator, and deciduous forests, coniferous forests, tundra, grasslands, dry savannahs and deserts filled the space. The continental drift of this epoch played a large role on how animals would be spread. South America became linked to North America through the Isthmus of Panama, which almost brought an end to South American marsupials and caused the Atlantic Ocean to drop in temperature. There are 3 main eras of development of multicellular life on Earth: Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic Eras . The Cenozoic Era is the most recent era of the 3 major subdivisions. It spans 65 million years from the end of the extinction of dinosaurs to the present. This era is divided into 2 periods:Tertiary period and the Quaternary period. The Tertiary Period can be divided into 5 epochs: Paleocene, Eocene, Oligocene, Miocene, and Pliocene. The Quaternary period is divided into 2 epochs: Pleistocene and Holocene. The KT extinction, which is between the Mesozoic era and the Cenozoic era, laid the groundwork for the Cenozoic era. The KT mass extinction was an event where three-fourths of all animal and plant species became extinct. One of the more famous animals to become extinct at this time was the dinosaur. One hypothesis is that the mass extinction resulted from the impact of a large asteroid which led to disturbances to the environment. This hypothesis is supported by the KT boundary that shows high amounts of iridium which is rare on Earth but found on asteroids. www.universetoday.com Tertiary Period Quaternary Period corzakinteractive.com wikipedia.org The Paleocene epoch began after the extinction of the dinosaurs. Mammals that once hid from these mighty beasts, now started to thrive and evolve to fit their niches. In the beginning of this epoch mammals were small and rodent like, but as time passed they grew in size, number and diversity. The diversity of birds, reptiles, and plants also increased, and many species also became more specialized. tumblr.com bbc.uk.co infovisual.info ljmu.ac.uk darktemplar.deviantart.com research.amnh.org animals.howstuffworks.com lifemarien.com puppiesphotos.com saawinternational.org End.
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