The Jurassic period is a division of earth’s history spanning from around 201 to 145 million years ago, and during which dinosaurs became the dominant land vertebrates. By the Early Jurassic, the supercontinent of Pangaea had split into Laurasia, in the north, and Gondwana, in the south. Separating them was the Tethys Ocean. Sea levels in the Jurassic were high and the climate was warm and humid, leading to the growth of vast forests of conifers and ferns. In the oceans, marine reptiles continued to diversify, as did ammonites. During the Jurassic, reef-building rudist bivalves and belemnite cephalopods appeared. On land, dinosaurs flourished; among the most successful were the giant long-necked sauropods. Bird-like dinosaurs such as Archaeopteryx began to appear. In the skies, pterosaurs were common.
Published on March 1st, 2013 | by Dave Marshall
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