Evolutionary radiation: Difference between revisions

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==Examples of evolutionary radiation==
Perhaps the most familiar example of an evolutionary radiation is that of [[Eutheria|placental mammal]]s immediately after the [[extinction]] of the [[dinosaur]]s at the end of the [[Cretaceous]], about 66 million years ago. At that time, the placental mammals were mostly small, insect-eating animals similar in size and shape to modern [[shrew]]s. By the [[Eocene]] (58–37 million years ago), they had evolved into such diverse forms as [[bat]]s, [[whale]]s, and [[horse]]s.<ref>This topic is covered in a very accessible manner in Chapter 11 of [[Richard Fortey]]'s ''[[Life: An Unauthorised Biography]]'' (1997)</ref>
 
Other familiar radiations include the [[Cambrian explosion]], the [[Avalon explosion]], the [[Great Ordovician Biodiversification Event]], the [[Mesozoic–Cenozoic Radiation]], the radiation of land plants after their [[Evolutionary history of plants#land|colonisation of land]], the Cretaceous [[Evolutionary history of plants#Evolution_of_flowers|radiation of angiosperms]], and the diversification of insects, a radiation that has continued almost unabated since the [[Devonian]], {{Ma|400}}.<ref>The radiation only suffered one hiccup, when the [[Permo-Triassic extinction event]] wiped out many species.</ref>