Aridity, Cooling, Open Vegetation, and the Evolution of Plants and Animals During the Cenozoic

  title={Aridity, Cooling, Open Vegetation, and the Evolution of Plants and Animals During the Cenozoic},
  author={Juha J. Saarinen and Dimitra V. Mantzouka and Jakub Sakala},
The development of grassland ecosystems across most continents was a multistage process involving the appearance of open-habitat grasses in the Paleogene, the mid-late Cenozoic spread of C3 grass-dominated habitats, and, finally, the Late Neogene expansion of C4 grasses at tropical and subtropical latitudes. In addition, the timing of these evolutionary and ecological events varied across continents and between regions. The middle Miocene witnessed a climate optimum at a global scale, but, soon… 

Supplementary material to "Evolution of continental temperature seasonality from the Eocene greenhouse to the Oligocene icehouse - A model-data comparison"

Abstract. At the junction of greenhouse and icehouse climate phases, the Eocene-Oligocene Transition (EOT) is a key moment in the history of the Cenozoic climate. Yet, while it is associated with

Giant dwarf crocodiles from the Miocene of Kenya and crocodylid faunal dynamics in the late Cenozoic of East Africa

We describe two new osteolaemine crocodylids from the Early and early Middle Miocene of Kenya: Kinyang mabokoensis tax. nov. (Maboko, 15 Ma) and Kinyang tchernovi tax. nov. (Karungu and Loperot, 18



Evolution of Grasses and Grassland Ecosystems

The evolution and subsequent ecological expansion of grasses (Poaceae) since the Late Cretaceous have resulted in the establishment of one of Earth's dominant biomes, the temperate and tropical

Vegetation dynamics in Europe during the Neogene

INTRODUCTION In Europe, the Neogene is characterized by paleogeographic reorganization due to the collision of the African with the Eurasian plate. Orogenic belts evolved in central and southern

Synchronous rise of African C4 ecosystems 10 million years ago in the absence of aridification

Grasslands expanded globally during the late Cenozoic and the development of these ecosystems shaped the evolution of many faunal groups, including our hominin ancestors. The emergence of these

The Neogene transition from C3 to C4 grasslands in North America: assemblage analysis of fossil phytoliths

Abstract The rapid ecological expansion of grasses with C4 photosynthesis at the end of the Neogene (8-2 Ma) is well documented in the fossil record of stable carbon isotopes. As one of the most

Ecometrics of large herbivorous land mammals in relation to climatic and environmental changes during the Pleistocene

The climatic cooling during the Cenozoic (65 Ma – present) culminated in the Pleistocene Ice Ages (ca. 2.6 Ma – 10 000 BP) during which the global climate oscillated between relatively warm climatic

Decoupling the spread of grasslands from the evolution of grazer-type herbivores in South America.

It is shown that although open-habitat grasses existed in southern South America since the middle Eocene, they were minor floral components in overall forested habitats between 40 and 18 Myr ago, and distinctly different, continent-specific environmental conditions (arid grasslands versus ash-laden forests) triggered convergent cheek-tooth evolution in Cenozoic herbivores.

Atmosphere, ecology and evolution: what drove the Miocene expansion of C4 grasslands?

  • C. Osborne
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    The Journal of ecology
  • 2008
A novel framework for integrating modern ecological patterns into theories about the geological history of C4 plants is offered, showing that increasing seasonality of rainfall is linked to changes in the relative abundance of the major C4 grass clades Paniceae and Andropogoneae.

Miocene ungulates and terrestrial primary productivity: where have all the browsers gone?

  • C. JanisJ. DamuthJ. Theodor
  • Environmental Science, Geography
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 2000
It is suggested that the early Miocene browser-rich communities may reflect higher levels of primary productivity in Miocene vegetation, compared with equivalent present-day vegetation types.