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Life in the Mesozoic

Mesozoic Mass Extinctions Mesozoic Extinctions Dinosaurs, marine reptiles, ammonites 76 ± 5% Cretaceous Most synapsids 80 ± 4% Triassic Major Loses to Species Loss** When (End of…)

Dinosaurs and their Relatives: a way of teaching paleontology ...

But while it is tempting to compare the success of mammals ( Synapsids ) vs. Dinosaurs …. Synpsids Synapsids Dinosaurs


synapsids and fishes. b. therapsids and amphibians. 5. Early mammals are thought to have avoided competition with dinosaurs by feeding on a. insects at night.

Carboniferous through Permian

First of all, early synapsids and reptiles may not have had the ability to digest plant food. In order to use the nutrients in plants, herbivores have to have appropriate teeth and jaws to chew up the plant material and appropriate microbes in their guts to help break it down.

The Amniotic Egg

Synapsids (B) have a single fenestra, and diapsids (D) have two fenestrae. Figure C shows a euryapsid, which has a single small fenestra; there are no living euryapsids, but many extinct marine animals such as plesiosaurs fall into this group.


However the estimated length of such acold period is only several years, and already endothermic synapsids, trained by the Permian cold, were probably not too much disturbed by it.

i7 Mammallike reptiles of Pangea

In the Middle Triassic, the synapsids were already relatively rare. 8 Some had earlier evolved to become primitive mammals (subclass Prototheria). 9 These did not go extinct (just as well for us!).

Fossil Reptiles of Great Britain

The oldest reptiles have been known from the early Late Carboniferous of Nova Scotia, Canada, since the 1850s, and these include 'protoro-thyridids' and synapsids.


Among the late Paleozoic synapsids, Varanopseidae has the longest fossil record, extending from the end of the Carboniferous to well into the Late Permian, and the widest geographical distribution, including North America, South Africa, and Russia.

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Synapsids were the first amniote group to undergo extensive adaptive radiation and were the dominant large amniotes of the late Paleozoic. What was the functional significance of the temporal open