Mammals inflated after the extinction of the dinosaurs. Here’s how they did it.

About 62 million years ago – just 4 million years after an asteroid the size of Everest smashed into Earth and ended the age of the dinosaurs – mysterious creatures with finger-like numbers on their feet appeared as the first large mammals to ever roam the planet. These animals, about the size of a large dog, soar above the mammals that existed before the space rock collided, and now, scientists think they know how the creatures outperformed their small mammal cousins.

In a new study published Wednesday (August 31) in the journal temper nature (Opens in a new tab)the researchers analyzed the fossilized teeth and bones From Pantulamda Bathmodona stocky, now-extinct mammal that weighed about 92 pounds (42 kilograms) when fully grown.

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