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Latest Vertebrate Stories

Running For Life: How Speed Restricts Evolutionary Change Of The Vertebral Column
2014-07-15 03:30:37

Naturalis Biodiversity Center One of the riddles of mammal evolution explained: the strong conservation of the number of trunk vertebrae. Researchers of the Naturalis Biodiversity Center and the University of Utah show that this conservation is probably due to the essential role of speed and agility in survival of fast running mammals. They measured variation in vertebrae of 774 individual mammal skeletons of both fast and slow running species. The researchers found that a combination of...

2014-06-18 11:22:57

Springer Review of mental ability shows fish are on par with most animals Do you still believe that fish are dumb and cannot feel pain? That we do not have to worry much about how they are cared for or caught? Think again, says Culum Brown of Macquarie University in Australia, in a review article in Springer’s journal Animal Cognition. The research notes that fish cognition and their sensory perception are generally on par with that of other animals. Brown therefore argues that more...

The Evolution Of Jaws Based On A 325M-Year-Old Shark-Like Fossil
2014-04-17 07:20:53

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Despite having retained their basic "sharkiness" for millions of years, modern sharks have less to tell us about the early evolution of jawed vertebrates—including humans—than was previously thought. A new study led by the American Museum of Natural History, based on the skull of a newly discovered 325-million-year-old shark-like species, reveals that modern sharks are quite evolutionarily advanced when compared to early...

Vertebrate Study Reveals The Evolution Of The Face
2014-02-13 09:19:21

[ Watch the Video: Animation Sequence of Romundina Fish Fossil ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Faces allow us to recognize each other almost instantaneously – so much so that they are the primary feature on our driver’s licenses and other identification cards. A study published on Wednesday in the journal Nature has revealed new details on the evolution of the jaw – a major defining structure in the evolution of the face. In the study, a team of...

Ancient Eel-Like Chordates Linked To Evolution Of Human Skeleton
2013-10-17 07:59:04

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online An international team of paleontologists has published new research in the journal Nature revealing that the human skeleton did not evolve from ancient predatory fossil fish, as previously believed. Rather, the human skeleton evolved as a way to protect against predators such as the conodont, extinct eel-like chordates that evolved tooth-like structures and tissues independently of other creatures, according to experts from...

Fossil Fish Reveals New Evolutionary Body Elongation Mechanism
2013-10-08 04:46:25

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online A third, previously unidentified reason for the extreme elongation of snake and eel bodies has been discovered by a team of University of Zurich paleontologists who published their findings Monday in the journal Nature Communications. The lengthy, slender and flexible bodies possessed by these creatures have evolved many times independently in the over 500 million years of vertebrate animal history, the study authors explained....

Fish Relatives Surprise Scientists
2013-07-18 04:53:01

Susan Bowen for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists have used genetic data to create a comprehensive evolutionary family tree, or phylogeny, for "spiny-rayed fish," a category that encompasses about a third of all living vertebrate species. They were quite surprised to find out just who was related to whom in the fish world. The researchers, who published their findings in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences looked at 10 genes in more than 500 fish species...

2013-06-06 11:49:18

Efforts to restore sturgeon in the Great Lakes region have received a lot of attention in recent years, and many of the news stories note that the prehistoric-looking fish are "living fossils" virtually unchanged for millions of years. But a new study by University of Michigan researchers and their colleagues reveals that in at least one measure of evolutionary change–changes in body size over time–sturgeon have been one of the fastest-evolving fish on the planet. "Sturgeon...

2013-04-19 19:20:47

Fishes account for over half of vertebrate species, but while groups such as mammals, birds and reptiles have been fairly well understood by scientists for decades, knowledge about relationships among many types of fishes was essentially unknown — until now. A team of scientists led by Richard Broughton, associate professor of biology at the University of Oklahoma, published two studies that dramatically increase understanding of fish evolution and their relationships. They...

New Insight Into Evolution Offered From Unusual Anal Fin
2013-04-10 09:31:33

University of Manchester An unusual fossil fish that has fins behind its anus could have implications for human evolution according to a scientist at The University of Manchester. Dr Robert Sansom from the Faculty of Life Sciences identified the paired fins of Euphanerops, a fossil jawless fish that swam in the seas around 370 million years ago. The find makes the fish one of the first vertebrate to develop paired appendages such as fins, legs or arms. However, their positioning is...


Word of the Day
vermicular
  • Like a worm in form or movement; vermiform; tortuous or sinuous; also, writhing or wriggling.
  • Like the track or trace of a worm; appearing as if worm-eaten; vermiculate.
  • Marked with fine, close-set, wavy or tortuous lines of color; vermiculated.
  • A form of rusticated masonry which is so wrought as to appear thickly indented with worm-tracks.
This word ultimately comes from the Latin 'vermis,' worm.
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