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Latest Derek Briggs Stories

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2010-05-14 07:24:56

Paleontologists have discovered a rich array of exceptionally preserved fossils of marine animals that lived between 480 million and 472 million years ago, during the early part of a period known as the Ordovician. The specimens are the oldest yet discovered soft-bodied fossils from the Ordovician, a period marked by intense biodiversification. The findings, which appear in the May 13 issue of the journal Nature, greatly expand our understanding of the sea creatures and ecosystems that...

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2010-03-22 13:15:00

A geologist from the University of Leicester is part of a team that has uncovered an ancient water flea-like creature from 425 million years ago "“ only the third of its kind ever to be discovered in ancient rocks. Professor David Siveter, of the Department of Geology at the University of Leicester worked with Professor Derek Siveter at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Professor Derek Briggs at Yale University USA and Dr Mark Sutton at Imperial College to make the rare...

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2009-09-10 06:02:38

The large group of segmented worms known as annelids, which includes earthworms, leeches and bristle worms, evolved millions of years ago and can be found in every corner of the world. Although annelids are one of the most abundant animal groups on the planet, scientists have struggled to understand how the different species of this biologically diverse group relate to each other in terms of their evolutionary history. Now a team of scientists from Yale University and Dartmouth College has...

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2009-08-26 07:40:00

Known for their wide variety of vibrant plumage, birds have evolved various chemical and physical mechanisms to produce these beautiful colors over millions of years. A team of paleontologists and ornithologists led by Yale University has now discovered evidence of vivid iridescent colors in feather fossils more than 40 million years old. The finding, published online August 26 in Biology Letters, signifies the first evidence of a preserved color-producing nanostructure in a fossilized...

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2009-02-06 07:54:05

A missing link in the evolution of the front claw of living scorpions and horseshoe crabs was identified with the discovery of a 390 million-year-old fossil by researchers at Yale and the University of Bonn, Germany. The specimen, named Schinderhannes bartelsi, was found fossilized in slate from a quarry near Bundenbach in Germany, a site that yields spectacularly durable pyrite-preserved fossils "” findings collectively known as the Hunsrck Slate. The Hunsrck Slate has previously...

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2008-01-09 15:35:35

New Haven, Conn. -- Discovery of an exceptional fossil specimen in southeastern Morocco that preserves evidence of the animal's soft tissues has solved a paleontological puzzle about the origins of an extinct group of bizarre slug-like animals with rows of mineralized armor plates on their backs, according to a paper in Nature. While evolution has produced great diversity in the body designs of animals, over the course of history several highly distinct groups, such as trilobites and...

2007-02-14 09:01:01

By Gupta, Neal S; Briggs, Derek E G; Pancost, Richard D Graptolites are important fossils in Early Palaeozoic assemblages. Preserved graptolite periderm consists dominantly of an aliphatic polymer, immune to base hydrolysis. It contains no protein even though its structure, and chemical analyses of the periderm of the living relative Rhabdopleura, indicate that it was originally collagen. This anomaly was previously interpreted as the result of replacement by macromolecular material from...


Word of the Day
cenobite
  • One of a religious order living in a convent or in community; a monk: opposed to anchoret or hermit (one who lives in solitude).
  • A social bee.
This word comes from the Latin 'coenobium,' convent, which comes from the Greek 'koinobios,' living in community.
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