The latest evidence that was unearthed from the depths proves that mammals almost became extinct along with the dinosaurs.
Recent research proves that 90% of the mammals got killed alongside the dinosaurs when a huge asteroid fell from the skies in prehistoric times. We are talking about the Cretaceous Period which was existant some 66 million years ago. While previous studies show that only a few mammals were killed off, the latest evidence on the contrary points out the contradictions in this claim.
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In fact, the majority of mammals were decimated along with their reptilian cousins, according to a new study by researchers at the Milner Centre for Evolution at the University of Bath and published in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology.
While mammals also died in record numbers, those few members that survived tended to eke out a living and thrived later on. Their recovery rate was phenomenal. This was what led to a boom in mammals across the globe. The fossil inventory from North America from some time before until after the large asteroid hit the earth show this quite clearly.
The extinction was almost total in its devastation and razing effects. Yet the mammals bounced back with vigor and strength. Pretty soon they had supplanted the dinosaurs which used to rule the roost before them.
What is new to science is the great number of mammals that also got wiped out alongside the dinosaurs. This comes as somewhat of a shock. The species that didn’t manage to survive are found today in the form of fossils. Yet the ones that did manage to slip back into the evolutionary ladder are found thriving today.
The amount of extinction was underestimated previously by the scientists. Yet now they know better and it is about time that science corrected some biased judgments of its own.
After the asteroid hit the earth, most of the plants and animals that formed a crucial part of the food chain would have probably died out. So the animals left would have most likely eaten insects in order to continue to live.
Thus with so little food to go around, only tiny mammals must have lived in such an atmosphere of scarcity and insecurity. The biggest land animals were no bigger than your average pet cat.
It was the small size of the mammals that worked in their favor. They scampered here and there in search of grub. After the great extinction period in the Cretaceous Era, life once again bloomed and a diversity of creatures ultimately took over as is evident from today’s scenario.