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Latest Paleontology Stories

Evolution Of Theropods Linked To Environmental Factors
2012-11-29 05:41:02

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The heaviest flying bird tops out at between 40-42 pounds. And sure, some of the flightless birds can grow to upwards of 300 pounds. But to imagine ancestors of these modern day creatures tipping the scales at upwards of 7,000 pounds is hard to do, indeed. A recent study out of North Carolina State University (NCSU) and the Field Museum in Chicago, Illinois, looks specifically at the feathered herbivores of the Cretaceous period...

Fish Ear Bones Can Offer Clues To Impacts Of Climate Change In Aquatic Environments
2012-11-28 11:38:09

CSIRO Australia The earbones, or 'otoliths', help fish to detect movement and to orient themselves in the water. Otoliths set down annual growth rings that can be measured and counted to estimate the age and growth rates of fish. "Otoliths can form the basis of new techniques for modelling fish growth, productivity and distribution in future environments," said Dr John Morrongiello of CSIRO's Wealth from Oceans Flagship, lead author of a paper published online in Nature Climate Change...

2012-11-27 11:23:43

A new twist on the evolution of species What happens when the modern evolutionary theory of punctuated equilibrium collides with the older theory of mosaic evolution? Part of the answer comes from a new, wide-ranging study by paleobiologists Melanie J Hopkins at the Museum fuer Naturkunde Berlin and Scott Lidgard at the Field Museum in Chicago. Their results are published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). While processes of evolution are largely...

Paleontological Enigma Solved Thanks To Scrappy Grave Digger
2012-11-20 12:39:41

Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online There´s a popular cartoon geared towards adults which tells the story of a hapless young man who accidentally stumbles into a cryogenic capsule just moments before the turn of the century. The capsule just so happens to be set for 1,000 years, long enough for a couple of alien and robot uprisings and for the entire world our character knew to be virtually wiped away. The rest of the show is centered on how this 20th century...

Paleontology And Development Genetics Help Piece Together Evolutionary History
2012-11-08 06:30:08

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Developmental genetics and paleontology seem worlds away from each other and the gulf between fossils and petri dishes seems insurmountable. Even the essential questions of the two disciplines are miles apart. Paleontology strives to determine "What happened in evolution?", while developmental genetics uses gene control in embryos to try to answer "How did it happen?" Scientists have been combining the two, however, with some remarkable...

Dinosaurs Studied To Test Cope's Rule
2012-11-03 06:05:06

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Before noted paleontologist and ichthyologist Edward Cope passed away in 1897, he had devised a theory that has, to this day, its proponents and detractors. His theory, known today as Cope´s Rule, stated that animals will, in their own voyage through the process of evolution, grow ever larger. This evolutionary trend has been noted across the animal kingdom. Researchers from the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) want to...

Ancient Lucy Spent Some Of Her Time In Trees
2012-10-26 06:23:53

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists have known that Australopithecus afarensis — the species of the well-known Lucy specimen — was an upright walking species, but they debate whether or not A. afarensis spent much of its time in trees. A comprehensive answer to this question has been unavailable because a complete set of A. afarensis shoulder blades has never been available for study. Professor David Green of Midwestern University and Zeresenay...

100-Million-Year-Old Fossil From Texas Is New Fish Species
2012-10-25 12:45:29

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online 100-million year old pieces of tiny fossil skull found in Fort Worth, Texas, have been identified as a new species of coelacanth fish, according to paleontologist John F. Graf of Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas. At 400 million years, the coelacanth has one of the longest lineages of any animal. The coelacanth is the most closely related fish to vertebrates, including humans. The findings of this discovery were published...

Celebrate National Fossil Day On October 17
2012-10-14 04:52:13

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online October 17, 2012 is National Fossil Day, sponsored by the National Park Service (NPS) and the American Geological Institute (AGI). This year is the third annual event, scheduled in conjunction with Earth Science Week. The mission of National Fossil Day is to promote public awareness and stewardship of fossils. The NPS hopes to foster an appreciation of the scientific and educational value of fossil preservation and study. "Fossils...

Ancient Origins Of Modern-day Deep-sea Animals Suggested By New Fossils
2012-10-11 08:18:53

A collection of fossil animals discovered off the coast of Florida suggests that present day deep-sea fauna like sea urchins, starfish and sea cucumbers may have evolved earlier than previously believed and survived periods of mass extinctions similar to those that wiped out the dinosaurs. The full results are published Oct. 10 in the open access journal PLOS ONE by Ben Thuy and colleagues from the University of Göttingen, Germany. Previously, researchers believed that these...


Latest Paleontology Reference Libraries

Robert Thomas Bakker
2014-04-22 14:27:45

Robert Thomas Bakker (born March 24, 1945) is an American Paleontologist known for his contribution to the “Dinosaur Renaissance” and his support of his mentor Ostrom’s theory that some dinosaurs were warm-blooded. He specializes in the ecological context and behavior of dinosaurs. Bakker was born in Bergen County, New Jersey. As a young boy, he developed an interest in dinosaurs following his first trip to the dinosaur exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History – he was...

Northern Sun Star, Solaster endeca
2013-11-14 11:54:31

The northern sun star (Solaster endeca), also known as the purple sun star or the smooth sun star, is a species of starfish that is classified within the Solasteridae family. It can be found in the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean with a range that includes coastlines of Greenland, Canada, and the United States. It prefers a habitat in areas with adequate to heavy shelter and muddy or rocky sediment, at depths of up to 1,480 feet. The northern sun star is large, reaching a diameter of 7.9...

Morning Sun Star, Solaster dawsoni
2013-11-11 11:20:37

The morning sun star (Solaster dawsoni) is a species of starfish that is classified within the Solasteridae family. It can be found in northern areas of the Pacific Ocean with a range that extends from the coasts of China, Japan, and Siberia to the coasts of California in the United States. It prefers a habitat in rocky areas at depths of up to 1,380 feet. This species has two subspecies known as Solaster dawsoni dawsoni and Solaster dawsoni arcticus. It has a wide body with eight to thirteen...

Paleontology
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Paleontology or Palaeontology is the scientific study of prehistoric life, including the study of fossils to determine the organisms evolution and interactions with each other and their environments. Paleontological observations have been documented as far back as 5th century BC. The science became established in the 18th century as a result of Georges Cuvier’s work on comparative anatomy, and it developed quickly within the 19th century. The term itself comes from Greek palaios, meaning...

John R. “Jack” Horner
2013-10-14 13:35:47

John R. “Jack” Horner (born June 15, 1946) is an American paleontologist known for his research on dinosaur growth, and for discovering evidence that some dinosaurs nested and cared for their young.  He is perhaps the most famous paleontologist due to his role as technical advisor for all three Jurassic Park films, and his providing inspiration for Dr. Alan Grant, the film's lead character. He also advised on the FOX television show Terra Nova. Horner was born and raised in the small...

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Word of the Day
endocarp
  • The hard inner (usually woody) layer of the pericarp of some fruits (as peaches or plums or cherries or olives) that contains the seed.
This word comes from the Greek 'endon,' in, within, plus the Greek 'karpos', fruit.
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