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Latest Cretaceous Stories

Evidence Supports Dinosaur Extinction Level Event
2013-02-07 19:14:22

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online We´ve had an increasing fascination with comets and asteroids over the past several years. We´ve fictionally sent a rogue group of astronauts to detonate one of these heavenly travelers. We´ve seen the disastrous effect of a potential impact in both movies and on television. We´ve elevated our global anxiety tracking the trajectory of these large, quickly moving celestial bodies. And it seems our vigilance...

Solving A Mystery: Where Did Flowers Come From?
2012-12-06 14:50:49

Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Beautiful flowers and flowering plants are quite commonplace in our world, a lovely addition to the natural landscape of things. Flowers have even helped shape our history and our art for thousands of years, acting as a symbol of beauty, love and passion. Though we simply acknowledge flowers as familiar and standard, there remains one mystery about these colorful and often vibrant angiosperms: Where did they originate?...

Paleontological Enigma Solved Thanks To Scrappy Grave Digger
2012-11-20 12:39:41

Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online There´s a popular cartoon geared towards adults which tells the story of a hapless young man who accidentally stumbles into a cryogenic capsule just moments before the turn of the century. The capsule just so happens to be set for 1,000 years, long enough for a couple of alien and robot uprisings and for the entire world our character knew to be virtually wiped away. The rest of the show is centered on how this 20th century...

Cretaceous Extinction Worsened By Ecosystem Structures
2012-10-30 04:17:18

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A mass extinction, wiping out numerous species including the dinosaurs, marked the end of the Cretaceous Period. A new study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), reveals that the structure of North American ecosystems made the extinction worse than it might have been. Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula is home to the now-buried Chicxulub impact crater, caused by a mountain-sized asteroid. This impact is...

100-Million-Year-Old Fossil From Texas Is New Fish Species
2012-10-25 12:45:29

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online 100-million year old pieces of tiny fossil skull found in Fort Worth, Texas, have been identified as a new species of coelacanth fish, according to paleontologist John F. Graf of Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas. At 400 million years, the coelacanth has one of the longest lineages of any animal. The coelacanth is the most closely related fish to vertebrates, including humans. The findings of this discovery were published...

What Triggered North American Dinosaur Diversity?
2012-08-04 07:09:39

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online The rise of the Rocky Mountains and the arrival of a seaway that divided North America into three distinct sections may have been the catalyst for the evolution of new species of dinosaurs, claims a new study published in Thursday's edition of the journal PLoS ONE. The study, which was led by Ohio University (OU) postdoctoral researcher Terry Gates, could explain evolutionary and migratory patterns of North American duck-billed...

Giant Insects Ruled The Sky Until Evolution Of Birds Kicked In
2012-06-05 04:02:22

Giant insects in ancient days use to be kings of the sky, until the evolution of birds about 150 million years ago. Scientists at the University of California, Santa Cruz found that despite rising oxygen levels, insects eventually lost their grip as the dominate species in the sky. During the late Carboniferous and early Permian periods the skies were littered with 28-inch dragonfly-like insects and other ancient species that were too big to whack with a fly swatter. The authors of...

2012-05-23 17:04:00

The rise of the tyrants of the South The stubby arms of Tyrannosaurus rex obviously weren't designed for hand-to-hand combat. However, the abelisaurids of the Southern hemisphere were even less well equipped in that department—and upper limb reduction began very early in their evolution. When Tyrannosaurus and its relatives roamed North America and Asia, the abelisaurids occupied a similar niche in Patagoniaand other areas ofGondwanaland. They were the dominant predators in the...

Some Dinosaurs Were Already Dying Out Before Asteroid Impact
2012-05-02 04:49:27

Lawrence LeBlond for RedOrbit.com [ Watch the Video ] An asteroid impact may have ended the reign of the dinosaurs here on Earth about 65 million years ago, but new evidence suggests many of the large, plant-eating dinosaurs were already dying out during the last 12 million years of the Cretaceous period. The findings, by an international team of US and German scientists, do not dispute the mass extinction that killed off all the dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous era. They do,...

First Fruitful, Then Futile: Ammonites Or The Boon And Bane Of Many Offspring
2012-04-23 08:48:13

For 300 million years, they were the ultimate survivors. They successfully negotiated three mass extinctions, only to die out eventually at the end of the Cretaceous along with the dinosaurs: Ammonoids, or ammonites as they are also known, were marine cephalopods believed to be related to today's squid and nautiloids. Ammonoids changed their reproductive strategy early on in the course of evolution. However, what was once a successful initial strategy may well have proved to be a fatal...


Latest Cretaceous Reference Libraries

Tenontosaurus
2013-01-29 09:53:30

Image Caption: Head of Tenontosaurus, Institut de paléontologie humaine, Paris, France. Credit: Rémih/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0) Tenontosaurus, meaning “sinew lizard”, is a genus of medium to large sized ornithopod dinosaur. The genus is known from the late Aptian to Albian ages of the middle Cretaceious period sediments of western North America, dating roughly between 115 to 108 million years ago. It was formerly thought to be a ‘hypsilophodont’, but since Hypsilophodontia is no...

794px-Sauroposeidon_protheles_1
2012-03-21 22:48:02

Sauroposeidon, meaning “earthquake god lizard,” is a genus of sauropods dinosaur from the Aptian and Albian ages of the Early Cretaceous Period (110 million years ago). It was discovered in the southeast region of Atoka County, Oklahoma, not far from the border of Texas, in a claystone outcrop. The fossils were initially misidentified as pieces of petrified wood when they were found in 1994. A more detailed analysis in 1999 revealed they were truly dinosaurian bones. They were formally...

0_13e03c979de918ad3bf95cb5bde79152
2011-01-03 18:03:01

Qiaowanlong is a genus of sauropod dinosaur from the Albian stage of the Early Cretaceous Period (100 million years ago). It was discovered in the Yujinzi Basin of Gansu, China in 2007. It came from the geological formation called the Xinminpu Group. Qiaowanlong is known from articulated cervical (neck) vertebrae and a right pelvic girdle, as well as several unidentified bone fragments. It was the first brachiosaurid to have been found from China. Qiaowanlong is estimated to have been...

0_5c6e9eeba97c306c5fb67de29a192816
2011-01-03 17:56:44

Qantassaurus is a genus of ornithopod dinosaur from the late Aptian to early Albian age of the Early Cretaceous Period (115 million years ago). It lived in Australia when the continent was still south of the Antarctic Circle, and was still part of the supercontinent Gondwana. Qantassaurus was discovered in 1996 during the third annual field season of the Dinosaur Dreaming Project, a dig jointly run by Monash University and Museum Victoria. It was found in the intertidal site known as Flat...

45_7a2c63cd5c0f6623d8bb4553d26a7c30
2010-09-16 16:54:13

Santanaraptor, meaning "Santana Formation thief", is a genus of theropod dinosaur from the Albian or Aptian stage of the Early Cretaceous Period (108 million years ago). It lived in what is now South America. When first discovered, Santanaraptor was thought to be a maniraptoran theropod. However, it is now thought to be a primitive coelurosaur based on features present on the femur. The type species, S. placidus, was first described by Kellner in 1999. The species name refers to Placido...

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Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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