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Latest Extinction Stories

Woolly Mammoths And Other Megafauna Suffered From A Loss Of Plant Diversity
2014-02-06 09:29:49

[ Watch the Video: Diet Changes Killed Off Woolly Mammoths ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists have put forth many theories on why woolly mammoths and other large animals went extinct around 10,000 years ago, from the devastating effects of a comet impact to overhunting by humans. A new DNA-based study published in the journal Nature has found that the flowering plants these “megafauna” depended on disappeared from northern Asia and North America...

Genes And Calls Reveal Greater Diversity Of Amazon Frog Species
2014-01-15 15:12:22

Pensoft Publishers Amazonian biodiversity has been studied for hundreds of years. Early explorers of Amazonian plants and animals included renowned naturalists of the stature of Alexander von Humboldt and A. R. Wallace. Despite this long history of exploration, new studies are resulting in the discovery of a large number of new species. The key of these discoveries lies in the use of advanced new tools for species detection. The study, published in the open access journal ZooKeys, found...

Humanlike Features Discovered In 4.4M-Year-Old Ardipithecus Skull
2014-01-07 06:54:22

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The 4.4-million-year-old African species Ardipithecus ramidus, or "Ardi," is the focus of one of the most hotly debated issues in current human origins research. Scientists want to know how Ardi, an unusual primate, is related to the human lineage. The study, published in the online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), shows that although Ardi possessed a tiny brain and a grasping big toe for climbing...

Partial Skeleton Discovery Suggests Ruggedly Built, Tree-climbing Human Ancestor
2013-12-06 06:35:35

University of Colorado Denver A human ancestor characterized by "robust" jaw and skull bones was a muscular creature with a gorilla-like upper body and more adaptive to its environment than previously thought, scientists have discovered. Researchers found a partial skeleton -- including arm, hand, leg and foot fragments -- dated to 1.34 million years old and belonging to Paranthropus boisei at the Olduvai Gorge World Heritage fossil site in Tanzania. The find, published in the latest...

Generation Length For Mammals Is An Essential Reference Point For Conservation Studies
2013-11-13 14:21:28

Pensoft Publishers Life history traits are the basic ecological descriptors of a species. These include physical traits, such as body mass and physiological traits, such as reproductive rate. Ecologists have investigated the variation in life history traits and their role in determining the response of species to changing conditions, such as climate change, as well as to anthropogenic stressors. Generation length is one of the most studied among such traits. It represents the age at...

King Of Gore: Super Predator Cousin Of T. Rex Found In Utah
2013-11-07 14:47:55

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online You may have noticed your local paleontologist has had an extra bounce in his step this week. That might have something to do with a monumental find of a new super-predator dinosaur in the Wahweap Formation within the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in south-central Utah. Known as Lythronax argestes, this super predator lived 80 million years ago and is a distant, older cousin to the larger Tyrannosaurus rex. Measuring...

Speciation Theory Questioned
2013-09-03 14:24:14

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online While scientists have catalogued millions and millions of species, there is still no agreement on how exactly new species form. However, a new study published this week in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences could deal a major blow to one prevailing theory - namely, that new species arise when a barrier prevents reproduction between populations. Species-creating barriers could be physical, such as a mountain range, or they...

T Rex Was Almost A Dinosaur With Another Name
2013-09-02 05:11:00

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Tyrannosaurus rex is arguably the most famous of all the dinosaurs, but apparently the iconic creature was very nearly known by another name. “When the first fossilized remains of the creature were found, the 29-foot carnivore was initially given a moniker that was rather more of a mouthful: Dynamosaurus imperiosus,” explained Richard Gray, Science Correspondent with The Telegraph. “The full story has emerged as the first...

Ancient Mammals Evolution Mass Extinction
2013-08-14 09:52:22

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online With the continuous expansion of human activity around the world, many species are facing the increasing threat of extinction as their habitats shrink and shift. Yet life on planet Earth has faced even larger extinction threats in the past. A new study int the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B examines how a group of mammalian relatives called anomodonts coped with a mass extinction event of the prehistoric past as a way to...

Evolution Not Fast Enough For Climate Change
2013-07-10 15:17:43

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online New research from two biologists at the University of Arizona and Yale suggests that evolution is not an option for species looking to cope with rising global temperatures. According to a study, terrestrial vertebrate species could not adapt to the 4 degree Celsius rise in average global temperatures, and many of these species could be driven to extinction. "Every species has a climatic niche, which is the set of temperature and...


Latest Extinction Reference Libraries

Waitoreke
2014-02-05 16:37:44

The Waitoreke is a cryptid from New Zealand described as being otter-like. Its name derived from “Wai” is a Maori word for water. The rest of the word has different translations, but the common one is “toreke,” which means to disappear. Together the name could translate into “disappears into water” or another translation is a “disappearing water specter.” The usual description is a small otter-like creature about the size of a cat. It has brownish short fur and short...

Red Rail, Aphanapteryx bonasia
2013-10-02 13:35:50

The Red Rail (Aphanapteryx bonasia) is an extinct and flightless rail. It was native to the Mascarene island of Mauritius, east of Madagascar within the Indian Ocean. It had a close relative on Rodrigues Island, the likewise extinct Rodrigues Rail, with which it’s sometimes considered congeneric. Its relationship with other rail isn’t clear. Rails frequently evolve flightlessness when adapting to isolated islands. It was slightly larger than a chicken and had reddish and hair-like...

Panthera leo spelaea
2012-11-16 15:34:04

Commonly known as the Eurasian cave lion or the European cave lion, Panthera leo spelaea is an extinct subspecies of lion. It is thought to have lived during the Pleistocene epoch, and may have lived in the Balkans in southeastern Europe until 2,000 years ago. The range of this cave lion would have included northwestern North America, Asia, and areas of Europe and would have extended from Germany, Spain, and Great Britain to the Yukon Territory. Its range also extended from Turkistan to...

Short-faced Bear, Arctodus simus
2012-04-27 19:45:45

The short-faced bear is an extinct genus of bears that was native to North America during the Pleistoscene era. Other common names include Arctodus and the bulldog bear. There are two subspecies of the short-faced bear, and one of them, Aroctodus simus, is thought to have been the largest terrestrial mammal on earth. Placed into a group of bears known as running bears or the tremarctine bears, this genus was found in Europe and the Americas. The earliest member of the tremarchtine group,...

American Lion, Panthera leo atrox or P. atrox
2012-04-26 06:05:05

The American lion (Panthera leo atrox or P. atrox) is also known as the North American lion, American cave lion, or Naegele’s giant jaguar. It is an extinct species that was native to North America and the northwestern parts of South America during the Pleistocene era. It lived up to eleven thousand years ago. During the last interglacial period in North America (the Sangamonian Stage), the American lion’s range included the Americas south of Alaska. The earliest fossils of these big cats...

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Word of the Day
cacodemon
  • An evil spirit; a devil.
  • A nightmare.
  • In astrology, the twelfth house of a scheme or figure of the heavens: so called from its signifying dreadful things, such as secret enemies, great losses, imprisonment, etc.
'Cacodemon' comes from a Greek term meaning 'evil genius.'
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