The Cenozoic (ˌsiːnəˈzoʊ.ɪk,_ˌsɛn- ; new life) is Earth's current geological era, representing the last 66 million years of Earth's history. It is characterised by the dominance of mammals, birds, conifers and flowering plants, a cooling and drying climate, and the current configuration of continents. It is the latest of three geological eras since complex life evolved, preceded by the Mesozoic and Paleozoic. It started with the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, when many species, including the non-avian dinosaurs, became extinct in an event attributed by most experts to the impact of a large asteroid or other celestial body, the Chicxulub impactor.The Cenozoic is also known as the Age of Mammals because the terrestrial animals that dominated both hemispheres were mammalsthe eutherians (placentals) in the northern hemisphere and the metatherians (marsupials, now mainly restricted to Australia and to some extent South America) in the southern hemisphere. The extinction of m
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