Latest Tuatara Stories

Dartmouth-led Study May Resolve Evolutionary Debate Of Turtles
2014-05-06 03:59:54

Dartmouth College Turtles are more closely related to birds and crocodilians than to lizards and snakes, according to a study from Dartmouth, Yale and other institutions that examines one of the most contentious questions in evolutionary biology. The findings appear in the journal Evolution & Development. The research team looked at how the major groups of living reptiles, which number more than 20,000 species, are interrelated. The relationships of some reptile groups are well...

Oldest Lizard Fossil Found
2013-09-25 12:21:00

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online An international team of researchers has discovered the oldest known lizard-like fossil near Vellberg, Germany. The find offers new insights into the evolution of reptiles including lizards, snakes and tuatara, according to a newly published report in BMC Evolutionary Biology. The ancient reptile’s fossilized jaws indicate that these reptiles were alive during the Middle Triassic period some 240 million years ago. “The Middle...

New Zealand Reptile Chews Food Unlike Any Other On The Planet
2012-05-30 08:56:23

[ Watch the Video ] Scientists studying one of New Zealand´s most iconic reptiles have found that it chews its food in a way unlike any other animal on the planet, challenging the popular perception that complex chewing ability is linked to high metabolism. The tuatara, a beak-headed lizard-like reptile that is the sole living member of a family of reptiles that was widespread during the age of the dinosaurs, is able to slice through its food like a “steak knife” would....

2010-09-07 11:15:00

Using a moving 3D computer model based on the skull and teeth of a New Zealand reptile called tuatara, a BBSRC-funded team from the University of Hull, University College London and the Hull York Medical School has revealed how damage to dental implants and jaw joints may be prevented by sophisticated interplay between our jaws, muscles and brain. This research will appear in a future edition of the Journal of Biomechanics. The tuatara is a lizard-like reptile that has iconic status in its...

2009-07-29 09:50:00

Mammals and many species of birds and fish are among evolution's "winners," while crocodiles, alligators and a reptile cousin of snakes known as the tuatara are among the losers, according to new research by UCLA scientists and colleagues."Our results indicate that mammals are special," said Michael Alfaro, a UCLA assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and lead author of the research.The study, published July 24 in the early online edition of Proceedings of the National...

2009-03-19 13:45:00

Conservationists said on Thursday that a rare "living fossil" tuatara reptile has been born in the wild in an area of New Zealand where it was believed to have been extinct for 200 years, the AFP reported. Scientists believed the tuatara had been extinct from New Zealand's three main islands for 200 years. Scientists say the lizard-like reptile, which shared the earth with dinosaurs, has survived for over 200 million years. However, conservationists reported more than 200 of the lizards have...

2009-01-30 13:17:20

Age didn't matter for a 110-year-old endangered male lizard-like creature and his 80-year old mate in New Zealand -- they just produced 11 offspring. Henry, a tuatara, only recently showed interest in the fairer of his species after years of disinterest in procreation and irascible behavior, CNN reported Friday. Tuataras -- the only living descendants of an order related to dinosaurs that roamed Earth 200 million years ago -- are endangered, living only on a few islands in New Zealand. In...

2009-01-27 14:26:34

A rare reptile in New Zealand known as Henry, has become a father for the first time at the age of 111. Henry is a tuatara, a lizard-like creature of prehistoric origin, that has become the father of 11 offspring over the past four years, staff at the Southland Museum in the southern city of Invercargill said Tuesday. Last March, he mated with Mildred, who later laid 12 eggs in June with 11 surviving. "It's the completion of a love story," museum tuatara curator Lindsay Hazley said. Henry is...

2009-01-21 14:29:31

The fossil of a lizard-like New Zealand reptile has been identified by a team of scientists from UCL (University College London), University of Adelaide, and the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. The fossil, dating back 18 million years, has triggered fresh arguments over whether the continent was fully submerged some 25 million years ago. Today, the endangered New Zealand tuatara (Sphenodon) is a lizard-like reptile that is the only survivor of a group that was globally widespread at...

2008-10-31 13:11:22

Officials said Friday that a rare reptile with lineage dating back to the dinosaur age has been found nesting on the New Zealand mainland for the first time in about 200 years. Conservation manager Rouen Epson said staff at the Karori Wildlife Sanctuary in the capital, Wellington, found four leathery, white eggs from an indigenous tuatara during routine maintenance work Friday. Epson said the nest was uncovered by accident and is the first concrete proof we have that our tuatara are breeding....

Word of the Day
  • Good cheer; viands.
  • To revel; to feast.
The word 'bellycheer' may come from 'belle cheer', "good cheer".