How mammals were able to differentiate in the Cenozoic Era

One of the major ways mammals differentiated was by way of their diet. The end of the Cretaceous and beginning of the Tertiary period is known as the K-T boundary (formerly called the KT boundary).

This is because we brought all our animals together to die, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. But not everyone ate plants like most dinosaurs did: some had started eating meat and plants, others had started eating fish and nuts and berries, and these different diets allowed mammals to follow their own evolutionary route – this is where it got interesting!

Of course there were other factors that lead to increased differentiation between mammals, such as climate change which moved many large dinos into extinction/near extinction or just simply out of the picture.

When talking about this, I like to imagine that it’s like if you were 5 years old – your parents would probably let you eat whatever was around. Chocolate cake for breakfast?

Sure! But when you go to kindergarten (the Cretaceous), suddenly everyone has their own time and their own special food which they only eat at lunchtime or at dinner (becoming more specialized). You can still eat chocolate cake whenever you want, but now your older brothers are starting to call dibs on that before you even notice it exists, so what do you do? This is why mammals started eating different things.

Mammals didn’t just differentiate by diet – they also differentiated because of where they lived/how often they moved, and because of the animals they chose to socialize with.

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