Jurassic Plants and Animals

Dinosaurs and cycads weren't the only Jurassic plants and animals.


During early Jurassic the climate got much wetter.
 
Macromesodon Macropterus Fish Fossil
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It supported plants like conifer trees, cycads, tree ferns, lycopods, and the famous Wollemi Pine, which was found still living the Wollemi National Park in New South Wales in 1994. Animals included fish, amphibians, lizards, insects, mammals and dinosaurs. Towards the end of the period, the first birds evolved. Dinosaurs were, however, the dominating animals in the Jurassic.

Late Jurassic Dragonfly Fossil
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In Australia, freshwater lakes held long-necked dinosaurs which are amongst the earliest dinosaurs in the world. The plant-eating sauropod Rhoteosaurus brownei, which was found in 1924 in south Queensland, was about 17m long and estimated to weight about 20 tonnes. There are many other dinosaurs found in Australia, but they are all from Cretaceous Period.

Archaeopteryx Lithographica Fossil
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Gondwanaland started to break up towards the end of Jurassic period. Australia, however, was sitting together with Antarctica until the end of Cretaceous period (and the end of Mesozoic Era - the age of dinosaurs). So Australian continent, as we know it today, did not exist until the beginning of Cenozoic Era. Some Jurassic rocks we can see today are the sandstones of Gobbolt Gorge in the inland north Queensland and the igenous dolerite in Tasmania.
























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