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Latest Fossil Stories

63bc9dfb495245fb8c9662aee9ab9d811
2010-04-20 12:09:01

An international team of scientists led by the paleontologist Steffen Kiel at the University of Kiel, Germany, found the first fossil boreholes of the worm Osedax that consumes whale bones on the deep-sea floor. They conclude that "boneworms" are at least 30 Million years old. This result was published in the current issue of the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS, April 19, 2010). Six years ago Osedax was first described based on specimens...

2010-04-07 08:49:56

Deep under the Mediterranean Sea small animals have been discovered that live their entire lives without oxygen and surrounded by 'poisonous' sulphides. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Biology report the existence of multicellular organisms (new members of the group Loricifera), showing that they are alive, metabolically active, and apparently reproducing in spite of a complete absence of oxygen. Roberto Danovaro, from the Polytechnic University of Marche, Ancona, Italy,...

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2010-04-05 14:45:00

A 95-million-year-old amber deposit uncovered in Ethiopia, the first major discovery of its kind from the African continent, is helping scientists reconstruct an ancient tropical forest and gain new insights into an ecosystem once shared by dinosaurs. The scientific team"”an international group of 20 researchers including Paul Nascimbene of the American Museum of Natural History's Division of Invertebrate Zoology"”describes the findings, which include new fungus, insects, spiders,...

502135584c767ae006d7d9aa361def3c
2010-04-02 12:32:00

Paleontologists can't always get what they want, to paraphrase the Rolling Stones, but sometimes they can get what they need, according to a study that will appear in the May issue of the American Naturalist. The fossil record captures both the broad sweep of evolutionary changes in life on earth as well as ecological responses to shorter-term local and regional environmental shifts. And yet the amount of variability seen among successive fossil assemblages tends to be low compared to that...

ce73d58d2d26c04752fbe820e6c20a0f1
2010-03-15 13:47:33

Evidence that the first widespread occurrence of terrestrial vertebrates 300 million years ago was in response to a brief episode of a globally warmer, drier climate A team of researchers from Carnegie Museum of Natural History has described a new genus and species of carnivorous amphibian from western Pennsylvania. The fossil skull, found in 2004 near Pittsburgh International Airport, was recovered from rocks deposited approximately 300 million years ago during the Late Pennsylvanian Period....

fe66226bc4e7820e7ee9a80f325593541
2010-01-31 13:27:43

Revelations of rotting fish provide scientists with clearer picture of early life Decaying corpses are usually the domain of forensic scientists, but paleontologists have discovered that studying rotting fish sheds new light on our earliest ancestry. The researchers, from the Department of Geology at the University of Leicester, devised a new method for extracting information from 500 million year old fossils - they studied the way fish decompose to gain a clearer picture of how our ancient...

90a0e238ccce4fb1fe19f85141d426a0
2009-11-11 07:40:12

How revising an ancient species can change what we know of a lineage's historical distribution and the climate in which it lived Fossil plants are windows to the past, providing us with clues as to what our planet looked like millions of years ago. Not only do fossils tell us which species were present before human-recorded history, but they can provide information about the climate and how and when lineages may have dispersed around the world. Identifying fossil plants can be tricky,...

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2009-11-02 05:35:00

Scientists have confirmed that spider webs discovered in Britain are the oldest on record, dating back 140 million years to the Cretaceous period. The webs, which were enclosed in amber, were discovered on a beach in East Sussex by fossil hunter Jamie Hiscocks and his brother Jonathan. Professor Martin Brasier, a paleobiologist at the Oxford University, said the fossils were the earliest spider webs ever to be entered into the fossil record. "This amber is very rare. It comes from the very...

2a201c819b340b84c5518ef3c015b2a71
2009-10-22 09:37:19

The fossil remains of some of the first animals with shells, ocean-dwelling creatures that measure a few centimeters in length and date to about 520 million years ago, provide a window on evolution at this time, according to scientists. Their research indicates that these animals were larger than previously thought. John Moore, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Earth Science at UC Santa Barbara, and his collaborators, analyzed fossils from the epoch called the Early Cambrian. During this...

a01f33938505b82ea0390465c0dbdb971
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...


Latest Fossil Reference Libraries

Atrypa
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Atrypa (lampshell) is an extinct genus of brachiopod from the Late Ordovician stage (444 million years ago) to the Carboniferous stage (318 mya). It occurs abundantly as fossils in marine rocks. Fossils have been found on all continents except Antarctica. This animal has distinctive concentric growth lines and is unusual in that in some Devonian beds there are numerous remains of the pedicle (foot) valve, but very few of the brachial (upper) valve -- scientists speculate that strong ocean...

45_d90d7517475790ab9d0e7b112e243a9d
2010-09-30 18:58:57

Seitaad, derived from a Navajo legend of a san monster with the same name -- "Seit'aad," is a genus of prosauropod dinosaur from the Early Jurassic Period. The type species, S. ruessi, was described in 2010 based on fossils recovered from the Navajo Sandstone Formation in southern Utah. It is known from a nearly complete fossil that appears to have been entombed by the collapse of a sand dune about 185 million years ago. Based on the fossil, the dinosaur would have been 10 to 15 feet long...

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Word of the Day
glogg
  • Scandinavian punch made of claret and aquavit with spices and raisins and orange peel and sugar.
This word comes from the Swedish 'glogg,' which is an alteration of 'glodgat,' mulled (wine).
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