Science & Tech

Scientists discover that humans have lived alongside dinosaurs

Scientists discover that humans have lived alongside dinosaurs
New species of dinosaur that grew to four metres long discovered in …

It turns out that human ancestors and dinosaurs could have actually co-existed, according to new research.

Scientists have produced a study which suggested that placental mammals were around before the asteroid that brought an end to the Cretaceous period hit Earth 66 million years ago.

A new paper published in the journal Current Biology claims that fossil records of placental mammals suggests that our ancestors roamed the Earth before the extinction event, and later flourished due to the lack of competition from dinosaur species afterwards.

According to the research, primates evolved shortly before the asteroid hit.

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Lead author Emily Carlisle of Bristol’s School of Earth Sciences said: “We pulled together thousands of fossils of placental mammals and were able to see the patterns of origination and extinction of the different groups.”

Our ancestors roamed the earth more than 66 million years ago, experts claimiStock

Carlisle added: “Based on this, we could estimate when placental mammals evolved.”

“The model we used estimates origination ages based on when lineages first appear in the fossil record and the pattern of species diversity through time for the lineage,” co-author Daniele Silvestro from the University of Fribourg shared.

While we don’t have a full picture of what human ancestors looked like at that time, it’s thought they “were small and squirrely”.

Carlisle said: “Unfortunately we don’t know what our placental mammal ancestors would have looked like back then.

“Many of the earliest fossils of placental mammals are quite small creatures such as Purgatorius – an early ancestor of primates – which was a small burrowing creature a bit like a tree shrew. So it’s likely that many of our ancestors were small and squirrely.”

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