This is a reconstructed skeleton of Carpolestes simpsoni
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This is a reconstructed skeleton of Carpolestes simpsoni

June 2, 2010
A reconstructed skeleton of Carpolestes simpsoni, an early primate from the Paleocene era. The almost-complete skeleton--the only one known to exist--was recovered from a 56 million-year-old limestone nodule that was found in the state of Wyoming. Study of the skeleton indicates that the animal had grasping hands and feet which allowed it to forage for flowers, fruit, seeds and insects on slender branches of trees and shrubs. Some of its features are strikingly similar to those of modern primates and may indicate that they share a recent, common ancestor. [See Related Image.]

[Note: This illustration was created for an article that appeared in the November 22, 2002, issue of Science Magazine about the outcome of a grant investigating plesiadapiform functional morphology and relationships to primates of modern aspect. The principal investigators of National Science Foundation-supported grant BCS 01-29601 are Phil Gingerich and Greg Gunnell of the University of Michigan.] (Year of image: 2002)

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