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Geological Time Scale

This table contains the geological time periods of the past 2.5 billion years on Earth to aid in understanding age immense age of these fossils.

(Ma = Mega-annum = 1,000,000 years)
EONERAPERIODEXTENT (Ma)DURATION (Ma)
PhanerozoicCenozoicQuaternary2.588–Present2.588+
Neogene23.03–2.58820.4
Paleogene66.0–23.0342.9
MesozoicCretaceous145.5–66.079.5
Jurassic201.3–145.056.3
Triassic252.17–201.350.9
PaleozoicPermian298.9–252.1746.7
Carboniferous358.9–298.960
Devonian419.2–358.960.3
Silurian443.4–419.224.2
Ordovician485.4–443.442
Cambrian541.0–485.455.6
ProterozoicNeoproterozoicEdiacaran635.0–541.094
Cryogenian850–635215
Tonian1,000–850150
MesoproterozoicStenian1,200–1,000200
Ectasian1,400–1,200200
Calymmian1,600–1,400200
PaleoproterozoicStatherian1,800–1,600200
Orosirian2,050–1,800250
Rhyacian2,300–2,050250
Siderian2,500–2,300200
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