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Latest Tetrapods Stories

Bipedal Rodents Survive In The Desert Using Jumps, Hops And Skips
2013-07-07 18:35:07

Society for Experimental Biology [ Video 1 ] [ Video 2 ] Researchers have found that bipedal desert rodents manage to compete with their quadrupedal counterparts by using a diverse set of jumps, hops and skips. A new study, to be presented at the Society for Experimental Biology meeting in Valencia on July 6, suggests that it is this unpredictable movement that allows the bipedal rodents to coexist in Old World deserts with quadrupedal rodents. Research headed by Talia Moore at...

2013-03-13 15:52:17

When, how and why modern humans first stood up and walked on two legs is considered to be one of the greatest missing links in our evolutionary history. Scientists have gone to the far ends of the earth — and the wonderful creatures in it - to look for answers to why we walk the way we walk. In the latest such search, researchers from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg (South Africa) have taken a closer look at bipedal kangaroos and wallabies and how they move...

Study Reveals First Ever Images Of Early Tetrapod Backbone And How It Helped In Land Evolution
2013-01-14 08:07:38

[Watch Video: 3D X-Ray Images Of Early Tetrapod Backbone] Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Using high-energy X-rays and a new data extraction protocol, an international consortium of scientists have for the first time rendered a 3D model of a prehistoric tetrapod backbone. The new reconstruction has shed new light on how the early animals moved once they made it onto land. One of the main creatures studied was a fierce-looking ichthyostega that lived from 374...

Ichthyostega_BW
2012-05-24 19:20:53

Lee Rannals for RedOrbit.com Scientists say that the 360-million-year-old animal that was first to have moved around on land did not do so using four legs. Images have shown that Ichthyostega walked on land similar to how a salamander walks around today, but 3D computer models have led scientists to disagree. According to a study published in the journal Nature, Ichthyostega would have actually transported from water using its front limbs as crutches. The animal lived during the...

2012-04-25 07:43:21

Here's an anatomical packing list for making that historic trip from water to land circa 370 million years ago: Lungs? Check. Legs? Check. Patches of highly vascular bone in the skin? In a new paper, scientists propose why many of the earliest four-legged creatures that dared breathe on land carried bony skin features. The "dermal bones" within the skin, especially the bones covering the skull roof and forming part of the shoulder girdle, had a highly complex surface of ridges and furrows...

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2010-05-18 07:23:07

Event of unknown origin occurred as first vertebrates tested land A mass extinction of fish 360 million years ago hit the reset button on Earth's life, setting the stage for modern vertebrate biodiversity. The mass extinction scrambled the species pool near the time at which the first vertebrates crawled from water towards land. Those few species that survived the bottleneck were the evolutionary starting point for all vertebrates--including humans--that exist today, according to results of a...

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2009-07-07 06:45:00

Nearly everyone can recall the high school textbook illustrations of the planet's first land-dwelling creatures, ubiquitously represented as comic-looking fish with short, stumpy legs.  A team of paleontologists, however, are challenging these standard depictions, saying that the earth's first tetrapods were for more diverse than previously suspected. "Some looked like crocodiles, some looked like little lizards, some like moray eels, and some were snake-like," explained Jennifer Clack...

2009-04-20 14:10:00

The fossil record usually shows what adult animals looked like. But the appearance and lifestyle of juvenile animals often differ dramatically from those of the adults. A classic example is provided by frogs and salamanders. New discoveries from Uppsala, Cambridge and Duke Universities, published in Science, show that some of the earliest backboned land animals also underwent such changes of lifestyle as they grew up. Professor Per Ahlberg at the Department of Physiology and Developmental...

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2009-04-18 14:00:00

New research from Duke University suggests a reversal in the order in which two four-limbed creatures transitioned from water to land.The Ichthyostega and Acanthostega, lived some 360-370 million years ago in modern-day Greenland.Scientists had previously considered Acanthostega to be the first vertebrate animal to possess limbs with digits rather than fish fins, but Viviane Callier, a Duke University graduate student, found fossilized evidence to suggest that Acanthostega may have had a...

2008-06-26 09:00:00

Scientists believe the discovery of well-preserved fossils in Latvia may explain the evolutionary history of how our ancestors moved from water to land.  Swedish researchers have reconstructed parts of the animal, which had a fish-like body but a head that appears better suited to land than water. The four-legged fish, known as Ventastega curonica, would have looked similar to a small alligator, the scientists say, and may in part explain the process of evolution. Researchers Per...