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Latest Museum Victoria Stories

Mammals Evolve From Size Of Mouse To Elephant In 24M Generations
2012-01-31 05:52:40

Mammals can evolve from the size of a mouse to the size of an elephant in as little as 24 million generations, although they shrink more than 10 times as fast as they grow to large sizes, according to new research reported Monday by an international team of biologists and paleontologists. The study is the first of its kind to measure how fast large-scale evolution can occur in mammals. The researchers explored increases and decreases in mammal size following the extinction of dinosaurs...

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2011-08-18 05:20:00

Scientists have identified a critical step in the evolution of filter-feeding whales' enormous mouths. These whales, otherwise known as baleen whales or mysticetes, have feeding adaptations that are unique among mammals, in that they can filter small marine creatures from huge volumes of water.  The whales accomplish this by using their "loose" lower jaw joints, which enable them to produce a vast filter-feeding gape. A new study of this ancient jawbone has overturned a long-held belief...

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2011-06-16 09:20:00

A fossil from a species of dinosaur previously believed to exist only in the northern hemisphere has been found in Australia, giving scientists new leads into the history of dinosaurs, reports the AFP news agency. The 125-million-year-old neck vertebrae of a fossil discovered in Victoria is identical to that of a Baryonyx, a fish-eating dinosaur from the Spinosaurid family, a family of dinosaurs that were thought only to exist north the equator. The finding suggests that northern and...

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2010-05-20 06:20:00

Scientists said Wednesday they had solved the mystery surrounding the paper nautilus, a brittle and translucent shell that belongs to the rarely-seen species of octopi known as argonauts. For centuries, biologists have pondered about what evolutionary function the female's delicate off-white casing has served, only knowing it is too thin to offer any protection from predators. The most popular theory throughout time was that it had served as a brood chamber to house eggs. But a new study...

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2010-03-26 06:00:00

Scientists have uncovered a hip bone believed to belong to an ancestor of the Tyrannosaurus Rex in Australia, providing the first evidence that the fearsome carnivore may have lived in the southern hemisphere, according to a Thursday University of Cambridge press release. The 30 centimeter long bone was discovered in Dinosaur Cove in Victoria by a team of researchers that included Dr. Roger Benson from the University of Cambridge's Department of Earth Science, Dr. Paul Barrett from the...

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2009-12-14 13:25:00

Scientists once thought of tool use as a defining feature of humans. That's until examples of tool use came in from other primates, along with birds and an array of other mammals. Now, a report in the December 14th issue of Current Biology, a Cell Press publication, adds an octopus to the growing list of tool users. The veined octopus under study manages a behavioral trick that the researchers call stilt walking. In it, the soft-bodied octopus spreads itself over stacked, upright coconut...


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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