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The Cenozoic Era, meaning "new life", is the current and most recent of the three Phanerozoic geological eras, following the Mesozoic Era and covering the period from 66 million years ago to the present.

The Cenozoic is also known as the Age of Mammals, because the extinction of many groups allowed mammals to greatly diversify.

Early in the Cenozoic, following the K-Pg event, the planet was dominated by relatively small fauna, including small mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. From a geological perspective, it did not take long for mammals and birds to greatly diversify in the absence of the large reptiles that had dominated during the Mesozoic. Some birds grew larger than the average human. This group became known as the "terror birds," and were formidable predators. Mammals came to occupy almost every available niche (both marine and terrestrial), and some also grew very large, attaining sizes not seen in most of today's terrestrial mammals.

Climate-wise, the Earth had begun a drying and cooling trend, culminating in the glaciations of the Pleistocene Epoch, and partially offset by the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. The continents also began looking roughly familiar at this time and moved into their current positions.

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The Cenozoic Era, meaning "new life", is the current and most recent of the three Phanerozoic geological eras, following the Mesozoic Era and covering the period from 66 million years ago to the present.

The Cenozoic is also known as the Age of Mammals, because the extinction of many groups allowed mammals to greatly diversify.

Early in the Cenozoic, following the K-Pg event, the planet was dominated by relatively small fauna, including small mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. From a geological perspective, it did not take long for mammals and birds to greatly diversify in the absence of the large reptiles that had dominated during the Mesozoic. Some birds grew larger than the average human. This group became known as the "terror birds," and were formidable predators. Mammals came to occupy almost every available niche (both marine and terrestrial), and some also grew very large, attaining sizes not seen in most of today's terrestrial mammals.

Climate-wise, the Earth had begun a drying and cooling trend, culminating in the glaciations of the Pleistocene Epoch, and partially offset by the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. The continents also began looking roughly familiar at this time and moved into their current positions. More

 
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