Geological Time Chart
(Evolution of major groups of animals)
Dominance of man. Domestication of animals and agriculture. Modern genera and species evolved. Last ice age 30-40 thousand years ago. Woolly mammoth extinct.
Mass extinction. Huge floods. Ice age. Many large mammals extinct. Mastodons and woolly mammoth extinct. Prehistoric man evolved. Cave paintings.
Dry climate. Oceans shrink. Mammals increase specialization. Mountains rise. First hominids appear. First orchids.
Ice age. First man-like apes. Evolution of apes, monkeys, horse, elephant. Radiation of grazing mammals. Huge grasslands. All grass subfamilies distinct.
Archaic mammals attain their maximum diversity. Creodonts (archaic carnivores) appear. First apes. Origin of grasslands.
Forests of monocotyledons and flowering plants appear. Ancestors of horse, camel, elephant appear. First bats.
Climate warm. Vegetation abounds. Ancestors of most modern mammals appear. Insectivores abundant. First grasses, Rhododendrons, whales and rodents.
Mass extinction. 60% of tetrapod families extinct. Himalayas, Andes, Alps arise. Dinosaurs and Ammonites extinct. First monocotyledons. First marsupials and placental mammals (Pantotheres). First flowering plants. Climate cool. Angiosperms radiate.
First bird, Archaeopteryx. Dominance of dinosaurs. Earliest mammals. Dicotyledons and conifers common. Continents become high. Origin of insect pollinators.
Massextinction. 80% of tetrapod families extinct. Continental drift begins. Arid conditions. Gymnosperms dominate. First dinosaurs.Mammal-like reptiles. First teleosts, first crocodiles and first flying reptiles.
Mass extinction. 70% of tetrapod families extinct. Single land mass, Pangaea and single ocean. Continents rise. Glaciations set in. Expansion of reptiles, origin of Cotylosauria and Therapsida. Last trilobites.
Warm and humid climate. Swamps abundant. First modern soils. First reptiles. Sharks abundant. First mammal-like reptiles. Earthworms.
Forests of ferns and gymnosperms. Foraminiferans and shell-crushing sharks abound. First winged insects. Radiation of amphibians. Little seasonal variations.
Mass extinction. Arid climate. First gymnosperm forests. First amphibians (Labyrinthodonts). First spiders. Dominance of fishes. First ferns. First vascular plants. First insects.
Algae dominate. Land plants definite. Trilobites decline. First scorpions and millipedes appear. First fishes, ostracoderms and placoderms appear.
Land submerged. Warm climate. Algae abound. Plants invade land. First corals. First vertebrates. Cephalopods and snails. First Agnatha.
Mass extinction. Mild climate. Marine algae. Many invertebrates. Trilobites. Brachiopods. Sponges. Molluscs. Explosion after mass extinction.
Primitive aquatic algae and fungi. Annelid burrows. Protozoa. Oxygenation of atmosphere. Prokaryote radiation. Skeleton of sponges.
Calcareous deposits by algae. Origin of life. Fossils of cyanobacteria.
Formation of Solar system. Strong solar wind. Formation of primitive atmosphere on earth.
Big Bang and matter synthesis.