AUSTIN, Texas — The oldest known vocal organ of a bird has been found in an Antarctic fossil of a relative of ducks and geese that lived more than 66 million years ago during the age of dinosaurs. (more…)
Tag Archives: age of dinosaurs
Scientists build new ‘tree of life’ for placentals, visualize common ancestor
Scientists have reconstructed the common ancestor of placental mammals–an extremely diverse group including animals ranging from rodents to whales to humans–using the world’s largest dataset of both genetic and physical traits. (more…)
The asteroid collision widely thought to have killed the dinosaurs also led to extreme devastation among snake and lizard species, according to new research — including the extinction of a newly identified lizard Yale and Harvard scientists have named Obamadon gracilis.
“The asteroid event is typically thought of as affecting the dinosaurs primarily,” said Nicholas R. Longrich, a postdoctoral associate with Yale’s Department of Geology and Geophysics and lead author of the study. “But it basically cut this broad swath across the entire ecosystem, taking out everything. Snakes and lizards were hit extremely hard.” (more…)
*Few parallels for today’s rapid ocean changes in geologic record*
The oceans may be acidifying faster today than they did in the last 300 million years, according to scientists publishing a paper this week in the journal Science.
“What we’re doing today really stands out in the geologic record,” says lead author Bärbel Hönisch, a paleoceanographer at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. (more…)
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Did an ancient crocodile relative give the world’s largest snake a run for its money?
In a new study appearing Sept. 15 in the journal Palaeontology, University of Florida researchers describe a new 20-foot extinct species discovered in the same Colombian coal mine with Titanoboa, the world’s largest snake. The findings help scientists better understand the diversity of animals that occupied the oldest known rainforest ecosystem, which had higher temperatures than today, and could be useful for understanding the impacts of a warmer climate in the future. (more…)