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Latest Cenozoic Stories

2008-03-03 18:41:52

Leaping, furry mini-monkeys that were as small as mice crossed the Bering land bridge long before humans, representing North America's oldest known primates. This new claim is based on the fossils of at least three individuals of this previously unknown species of extinct primate uncovered at a site near Meridian, Miss., scientists announced today. The researcher estimates the primate fossils date to about 55.8 million years ago. If the age of the fossils is accurate, the new...

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2008-02-22 16:30:00

The oldest fossils to date of early rabbit relatives were recently unearthed. These specimens, which are 53 million years old, are tiny ankle bones which are clearly adapted to running. These fossils belong to lagomorphs, a group which currently includes rabbits, hares and pikas. Prior to this finding which is published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, the oldest known lagomorphs dated to around 48 million years ago. The ankle bones which were found in...

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2007-09-20 15:50:00

WASHINGTON -- Scientists, wringing their hands over the identity of the famed "hobbit" fossil, have found a new clue in the wrist. Since the discovery of the bones in Indonesia in 2003, researchers have wrangled over whether the find was an ancient human ancestor or simply a modern human suffering from a genetic disorder. Now, a study of the bones in the creature's left wrist lends weight to the human ancestor theory, according to a report in Friday's issue of the journal Science. The wrist...

2007-08-14 06:16:40

By Prendergast, Kate Our prehistoric ancestors survived rapid climate change and rising temperatures as extreme as those we face today, says Kate Prendergast. What can they tell us about global warming? BETWEEN 18- 20,000 YEARS AGO, average temperatures in Europe probably fell to at least 10[degrees]C below the levels they are today. In the last great Ice Age, glaciers expanded rapidly and covered large areas of northern and central Europe in ice sheets. Much of Europe resembled tundra and...

2007-08-11 00:17:24

By LOS ANGELES TIMES A 11/2-million-year-old skull and an equally old jaw found in Kenya are helping rewrite the history of early man, eliminating one reputed ancestor from the human lineage and suggesting that another was much more primitive than previously believed, researchers said. The jawbone shows that Homo habilis, previously believed to be a direct ancestor of Homo erectus and thus of humans, lived side by side with H. erectus, making them sister species rather than mother and...

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2007-03-13 13:50:00

An international research team led by scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (Leipzig, Germany) and the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (Grenoble, France) has found evidence that some of the earliest members of our species had evolved our characteristically long developmental period, and most likely our extended childhood, over 160,000 years ago. These findings are in contrast to studies that suggest that early fossil hominins possessed short growth...

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2006-09-20 19:55:00

NEW YORK - In a discovery sure to fuel an old debate about our evolutionary history, scientists have found a remarkably complete skeleton of a 3-year-old female from the ape-man species represented by "Lucy." The remains found in Africa are 3.3 million years old, making this the oldest known skeleton of such a youthful human ancestor. "It's a pretty unbelievable discovery... It's sensational," said Will Harcourt-Smith, a researcher at the American Museum of Natural History in New York who...

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2006-08-29 12:14:41

The recovery of biodiversity after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction was much more chaotic than previously thought, according to paleontologists. New fossil evidence shows that at certain times and places, plant and insect diversity were severely out of balance, not linked as they are today. The extinction took place 65.5 million years ago. Labeled the K-T extinction, it marks the beginning of the Cenozoic Era and the Paleocene Epoch. "The K-T caused major extinction among North American...

2006-04-12 12:05:19

By Patricia Reaney LONDON (Reuters) - An international team of scientists have discovered 4.1 million year old fossils in eastern Ethiopia that fill a missing gap in human evolution. The teeth and bones belong to a primitive species of Australopithecus known as Au. anamensis, an ape-man creature that walked on two legs. The Australopithecus genus is thought to be an ancestor of modern humans. Seven separate species have been named. Au. anamensis is the most primitive. "This new...

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2006-04-12 14:40:00

WASHINGTON -- Fossils have long provided snapshots of the human family tree, but a new find in Africa gives scientists a kind of mini home movie showing man's primal development. Because the 4.2-million-year-old fossil is from the same human ancestral hot spot in Ethiopia as remains from seven other human-like species, scientists can now fill in the gaps for the most complete evolutionary chain so far. "We just found the chain of evolution, the continuity through time," said Ethiopian...


Latest Cenozoic Reference Libraries

Mapinguari
2014-04-22 13:41:18

Mapinguari The mapinguari or mapinguary is an ape-like cryptid said to inhabit the Amazon rainforests of Brazil and Bolivia. It is also known as the Isnashi. Several attempts to find physical evidence that the creature exists have been conducted. Samples have been gathered, but when analyzed it was found to be from known animals and some of the castings of tracks were inconclusive. Native folklore has described the creature as having only one eye, long claws, backward feet, a...

Palaeovespa
2014-04-18 16:08:43

Palaeovespa is a genus of wasps that holds seven species, all of which are extinct. Two of the species were discovered in Baltic amber deposits from Europe dating back to the middle Eocene era, while the other five were found in Florissant Formation amber from the Priabonian stage era in Colorado in the United States. This genus, and four of its species, was first described in 1906 by Dr. Theodore Cockerell in the Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology. Cockerell described all but one...

Australopithecus garhi
2013-11-29 11:38:51

Australopithecus garhi is a gracile australopithecine species whose fossils were discovered in 1996 by a research team led by Ethiopian paleontologist Berhane Asfaw ad Tim White, an American paleontologist. The remains are believed to be a human ancestor species and most likely the direct ancestor to the human genus Homo. Tim White was the scientist to find the first of the key A. garhi fossils in 1996 within the Bouri Formation found in the Middle Awash of Ethiopia’s Afar Depression....

Australopithecus africanus
2013-11-29 10:55:07

Australopithecus africanus was an early hominid, an australopithecine that lived between roughly 3.03 and 2.04 million years ago in the later Pliocene and early Pleistocene. Au. africanus was of slender build and was thought to have been a direct ancestor of modern humans. Fossil remains signify that Au. africanus was considerably more like modern humans that Au. afarensis, with a more human-like cranium permitting a larger brain and more humanoid facial features. This hominid has only been...

Neanderthals
2013-10-03 16:03:35

The Neanderthals or Neandertals are an extinct species or subspecies of the genus Homo which is closely related to modern humans. They are known from fossils, dating back from the Pleistocene period, which have been found in Europe and parts of western and central Asia. The species gets its name from Neandertal, “Neander’s Valley”, the location in Germany where it was first uncovered. Neanderthals are classified either as a subspecies of Homo sapiens or as a distinct species of the...

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Word of the Day
ramage
  • Boughs or branches.
  • Warbling of birds in trees.
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