Name: Juramaia ‭(‬Jurassic mother‭)‬.
Phonetic: Joo-rah-my-ah.
Named By: Zhe-Xi Luo,‭ ‬Chong-Xi Yuan,‭ ‬Qing-Jin Meng‭ & ‬Qiang Ji‭ ‬-‭ ‬2011.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Mammalia,‭ ‬Eutheria.
Species: J.‭ ‬sinensis‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Insectivore.
Size: Precise body size unavailable,‭ ‬but the skull is measured at‭ ‬22‭ ‬millimetres long.
Known locations: China,‭ ‬Liaoning Province‭ ‬-‭ ‬Tiaojishan Formation.
Time period: Callovian to Bathonian of the Jurassic.
Fossil representation: Almost complete skeleton preserved on slab.

       The significant thing about the discovery of Juramaia is that here you have a placental mammal appearing thirty-five million years earlier than‭ ‬the‭ ‬previously known contender Eomaia,‭ ‬a primitive mammal described in‭ ‬2002‭ ‬that was also discovered in Liaoning Province.‭ ‬This has helped researchers who are slowly piecing together a more complete picture of early mammal evolution,‭ ‬particularly that pertaining to placental mammals,‭ ‬a group that today encompasses many groups from whales to cats,‭ ‬dogs,‭ ‬horses and even primates and humans.
       Juramaia is thought to have been an arboreal creature living that lived in around the tree canopy and/or dense vegetation where it could hide from Jurassic era dinosaurs such as Xiaotingia and Anchiornis.‭ ‬Another evolutionary important find from the Tiaojishan Formation is the pterosaur Darwinopterus that displays the transition between primitive and advanced pterosaurs.

Further reading
- A Jurassic eutherian mammal and divergence of marsupials and placentals. - Nature. 476 (7361): 442–445. - Zhe-Xi Luo, Chong-Xi Yuan, Qing-Jin Meng & Qiang Ji - 2011.


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