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Latest Mesozoic Stories

Dinosaur Claws Were Used For More Than Just Ripping Flesh: Study
2014-05-07 12:08:20

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The claws of Tyrannosaurus rex and Velociraptor are probably best known for ripping through the flesh of hapless prey, but a new study published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B has found that this family of dinosaurs, known as theropods, probably used its claws for a variety of purposes. In the study, Stephan Lautenschlager, from Bristol University, examined the differences in claw shape among theropods and analyzed them based...

Evolution Of Smaller Dinosaurs Helped Their Lineage Survive As Birds
2014-05-07 09:53:08

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online While dinosaurs may have disappeared from the face of the Earth, their lineage has survived in the form of birds and new research published in the journal PLOS Biology has found that both dinosaurs and birds evolved into smaller and smaller sizes – potentially contributing to their success. “Dinosaurs aren't extinct; there are about 10,000 species alive today in the form of birds,” said study author Roger Benson, a paleobiologist...

Pinnochio Immortalized As A New Long-Snouted Dinosaur Species
2014-05-07 09:03:58

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online If Mister Geppetto was a real woodcarver rather than a fictional character, he may have been pleasantly surprised to learn that his beloved puppet Pinocchio is now immortalized in the realm of science – and that’s no lie. Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the University of Edinburgh have described a new species of long-snouted tyrannosaur, nicknamed Pinocchio rex, that was recently unearthed in southern China...

Int'l Research Team Names Most Primitive Species Of Flying Reptile
2014-04-24 14:57:10

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Pterosaurs, an order of winged reptiles that were the earliest reptiles to evolve powered flight and had gone on to become the largest known flying creatures to have ever existed, are at the center of a new fossil study from a team of international researchers. Researchers from the University of South Florida, George Washington University and Chinese Academy of Sciences say they have found the most primitive pterodactyloid known,...

Nanuqsaurus hoglundi
2014-03-13 09:43:11

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The reexamination of a dinosaur skull found in Alaska has revealed that it may have belonged to a “smaller cousin” of Tyrannosaurs Rex – not a completely distinct species as originally believed. According to a report on the examination published on Wednesday in the journal PLoS ONE, the skull belonged to a lineage of theropods, or “beast feet,” dinosaurs that includes T. Rex. With most T. Rex fossils coming from temperate...

New Species Of Torvosaurus Was Largest European Land Predator
2014-03-06 08:08:06

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Fossils of Torvosaurus, a large Jurassic-era theropod predator, were first unearthed in North America in 1971, later being named Torvosaurus tanneri. Examples of this dinosaur had not existed elsewhere until 2000, when paleontologists discovered another Torvosaurus fossil in Europe. The discovery, which came from a site just north of Lisbon, Portugal, led scientists to initially assume the remains were that of T. tanneri. However,...

Exceptional Fossils Of 160 Million Year Old Doahugou Biota
2014-03-05 10:02:18

Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Over the last two decades, huge numbers of fossils have been collected from the western Liaoning Province and adjacent parts of northeastern China, including exceptionally preserved feathered dinosaurs, early birds, and mammals. Most of these specimens are from the Cretaceous Period, including the famous Jehol Biota. However, in recent years many fossils have emerged from sites that are 30 million years earlier, from the Middle-Upper Jurassic Period,...

2014-03-03 15:21:05

A failed Saharan Atlantic Ocean rift zone Break-up of the supercontinent Gondwana about 130 Million years ago could have lead to a completely different shape of the African and South American continent with an ocean south of today's Sahara desert, as geoscientists from the University of Sydney and the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences have shown through the use of sophisticated plate tectonic and three-dimensional numerical modelling. The study highlights the importance of rift...

Ichthyosaur Birth Preserved In Fossil
2014-02-13 11:23:09

PLOS Ichthyosaur fossil may show the earliest live birth from an ancient Mesozoic marine reptile, according to a study published February 12, 2014 in PLOS ONE by Ryosuke Motani from the University of California, Davis, and colleagues. Ichthyosaurs were giant marine reptiles that evolved from land reptiles and moved to the water. Scientists report a new fossil specimen that belongs to Chaohusaurus (Reptilia, Ichthyopterygia), the oldest of Mesozoic marine reptiles that lived...

Giants Of Earth's History Still Pose A Wealth Of Riddles
2014-01-14 10:32:20

Johannes Gutenberg Universitaet Mainz Sauropods, the largest land animals in Earth's history, are still mightily puzzling the scientists. These plant-eating dinosaurs with their long necks and small heads could reach a height of 10 meters or more and dominated all other land vertebrates in terms of size. They could weigh up to 80 tons, more than any other known land vertebrate. One question that has been intensely debated is how these giants of the animal kingdom regulated their own body...


Latest Mesozoic Reference Libraries

2014-04-22 14:52:09

Edwin Harris Colbert (September 28, 1905 – November 15, 2001), known as “Ned” to his friends and colleagues, was a distinguished American Paleontologist. He helped popularize the study of dinosaurs through his prolific research, writings, and 40 years of work as a curator at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Colbert was born in Clarinda, Iowa, but moved to Maryville, Missouri during infancy. Like many young children, and most of his predecessors and contemporaries,...

Othniel Charles Marsh
2013-10-14 09:50:48

Othniel Charles Marsh (October 29, 1831 – March 18, 1899) was an American paleontologist, specializing primarily in vertebrates. He is highly renowned as one of the most prominent scientists of his time, having discovered and described dozens of new species. Marsh is also credited with developing what is currently the most widely accepted theory of the origin of birds. Marsh was born in Lockport, New York, to a family of moderate means. Thanks to the generosity of his uncle, George...

Styracosaurus
2013-04-29 14:54:48

Styracosaurus, meaning “spiked lizard” from the Ancient Greek styrax “spike at the butt-end of a spear-shaft” and sauros “lizard” was a genus of herbivorous ceratopsian dinosaur from the Cretaceous Period, about 76.5 to 75 million years ago. It had four to six long horns, stretching from its neck frill, a smaller horn on each cheek, and a single horn jutting out from its nose, which may have been up to 2 feet long and 6 inches wide. The function/functions of these horns and frills...

Thescelosaurus
2013-04-28 18:48:11

Thescelosaurus, meaning “godlike”, “wondrous”, or “marvelous” and “lizard” was a genus of small ornithopod dinosaur that appeared at the very end of the Late Cretaceous period in North America. It was a member of the last dinosaurian fauna before the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event around 65.5 million years ago. The completeness and preservation of many of its specimens illustrate that it might have preferred to live near streams. This bipedal ornithopod is known from...

Daspletosaurus
2013-04-28 18:27:18

Daspletosaurus, meaning “frightful lizard” is a genus of tyrannosaurid theropod dinosaur that resided in western North America between 77 and 74 million years ago, during the Late Cretaceous Period. Fossils of the only named species were found in Alberta, although other possible species from Alberta and Montana wait for description. Daspletosaurus is closely related to the much larger and more current Tyrannosaurus. Like most of the known tyrannosaurids, it was a multi-ton bipedal...

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Word of the Day
barghest
  • A goblin in English folklore, often appearing in the shape of a large dog and believed to portend imminent death or misfortune.
  • A ghost, wraith, hobgoblin, elf, or spirit.
The origin of 'barghest' is not known, but it may be from perhaps burh-ghest, town-ghost, or German Berg-geist (mountain spirit) or Bär-geist (bear-spirit).
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