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Preview: Fossils Current Events and Fossils News from Brightsurf

Fossils Current Events and Fossils News from Brightsurf

Fossils Current Events and Fossils News Events, Discoveries and Articles from Brightsurf

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The dinosaur menu, as revealed by calcium

Wed, 11 Apr 18 00:03:40 -0700

By studying calcium in fossil remains in deposits in Morocco and Niger, researchers have been able to reconstruct the food chains of the past, thus explaining how so many predators could coexist in the dinosaurs' time. This study was conducted by researchers from the CNRS, ENS de Lyon and Claude Bernard Lyon 1 University, in partnership with the French National Museum of Natural History and Sorbonne University.

Most primitive kangaroo ancestor rediscovered after 30 years in obscurity

Wed, 11 Apr 18 00:03:10 -0700

A handful of tiny teeth have led scientists to identify the most distant ancestor of today's kangaroos. The fossils were found in the desert heart of Australia, and then hidden away, and almost forgotten in a museum collection for over three decades. The findings are published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

Smithsonian scientists and collaborators demonstrate new driver of extinction

Wed, 11 Apr 18 00:09:50 -0700

By analyzing thousands of fossilized ancient crustaceans, a team of scientists led by NMNH paleontologist Gene Hunt found that devoting a lot of energy to the competition for mates may compromise species' resilience to change and increase their risk of extinction. Hunt, NMNH postdoctoral fellow M. João Fernandes Martins, and collaborators at the College of William and Mary and the University of Southern Mississippi reported their findings April 11, 2018, in the journal Nature.

Fossil study sheds light on ancient butterfly wing colors

Wed, 11 Apr 18 00:12:00 -0700

Pioneering new research has given an illuminating new insight into the metallic, iridescent colors found on the earliest known ancestors of moths and butterflies, which inhabited the Earth almost 200 million years ago.

First human migration out of Africa more geographically widespread than previously thought

Mon, 09 Apr 18 00:04:50 -0700

A project led by the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History has discovered a fossilized finger bone of an early modern human in the Nefud Desert of Saudi Arabia, dating to approximately 90,000 years ago. The discovery, described in Nature Ecology and Evolution, is the oldest directly dated Homo sapiens fossil outside of Africa and the Levant and indicates that early dispersals into Eurasia were more expansive than previously thought.

Research shows first land plants were parasitized by microbes

Wed, 04 Apr 18 00:01:20 -0700

Sainsbury Laboratory researchers have found that the relationship between plants and filamentous microbes not only dates back millions of years, but that modern plants have maintained this ancient mechanism to accommodate and respond to microbial invaders.

Ancient sea worm eats, poops and leaves behind evidence of Cambrian biodiversity

Tue, 03 Apr 18 00:08:50 -0700

University of Kansas researcher Julien Kimmig has uncovered details of the Cambrian food web on an ocean floor that once played home to a scattering of bivalved arthropods, hyoliths and trilobites.

Breakthrough in determining ages of different microbial groups

Mon, 02 Apr 18 00:04:30 -0700

An international team of scientists, which includes the University of Bristol, have made a significant breakthrough in how we understand the first three-quarters of life on earth by creating new techniques for investigating the timing and co-evolution of microbial groups.

Extinct monitor lizard had four eyes, fossil evidence shows

Mon, 02 Apr 18 00:07:00 -0700

Researchers reporting in Current Biology on April 2 have evidence that an extinct species of monitor lizard had four eyes, a first among known jawed vertebrates. Today, only the jawless lampreys have four eyes.

Decade of fossil collecting gives new perspective on Triassic period, emergence of dinosaurs

Wed, 28 Mar 18 00:14:40 -0700

A project spanning countries, years and institutions has attempted to reconstruct what the southern end of the world looked like during the Triassic period, 252 to 199 million years ago.

Turtle shells help decode complex links between modern, fossil species

Wed, 28 Mar 18 00:05:30 -0700

A new study by Florida Museum of Natural History researcher Natasha Vitek shows how scientists can use animals' physical features -- also known as morphology -- to make connections between a modern species and its fossilized relatives, even if they look strikingly different.

Fossils highlight Canada-Russia connection 53 million years ago

Wed, 28 Mar 18 00:15:30 -0700

A new 53 million-year-old insect fossil called a scorpionfly discovered at B.C.'s McAbee fossil bed site bears a striking resemblance to fossils of the same age from Pacific-coastal Russia, giving further evidence of an ancient Canada-Russia connection.

The structure is decisive

Mon, 26 Mar 18 00:00:30 -0700

Blue-green algae are one of the oldest organisms in the world and have an important role to play in many ecosystems on Earth. However, it has always been difficult to identify fossils as blue-green algae without any trace of doubt. The reason is their unremarkable sheath made of calcium carbonate. A master's student at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg has now developed a method which can help assign organisms to a particular species.

Paleontologists put the bite on an ancient reptile from New England

Fri, 23 Mar 18 00:03:40 -0700

Scientists have identified a new species of reptile from prehistoric Connecticut and, boy, does it have a mouth on it. Named Colobops noviportensis, the creature lived 200 million years ago and had exceptionally large jaw muscles -- setting it apart from other reptiles at the time. Even compared to the wide diversity of reptile species today, Colobops noviportensis had quite the bite.

When the Mediteranean Sea flooded human settlements

Thu, 22 Mar 18 00:14:20 -0700

Around 7,600 years ago, the emergence of agricultural settlements in Southeastern Europe and subsequent progress of civilization suddenly came to a standstill. This was most likely caused by an abrupt sea level rise in the northern Aegean Sea. German Researchers in Frankfurt and colleagues of the University of Toronto have now detected evidence in the fossils of tiny calcifying marine algae preserved in seafloor sediments.

The curse of zombie fossils

Wed, 21 Mar 18 00:09:40 -0700

Palaeontologists investigate the macabre science behind how animals decay and fossilize.

Dinosaur frills and horns did not evolve for species recognition

Tue, 20 Mar 18 00:04:50 -0700

The elaborate frills and horns of a group of dinosaurs including Triceratops and Styracosaurus did not evolve to help species recognise each other, according to researchers at Queen Mary University of London.

Palm trees are spreading northward. How far will they go?

Mon, 19 Mar 18 00:08:40 -0700

What does it take for palm trees, the unofficial trademark of tropical landscapes, to expand into northern parts of the world that have long been too cold for palm trees to survive? A new study, led by Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory researcher Tammo Reichgelt, attempts to answer this question. He and his colleagues analyzed a broad dataset to determine global palm tree distribution in relation to temperature.

Modern humans interbred with Denisovans twice in history

Thu, 15 Mar 18 00:07:30 -0700

Modern humans co-existed and interbred not only with Neanderthals, but also with another species of archaic humans, the mysterious Denisovans. Research published March 15 in Cell describes how, while developing a new genome-analysis method for comparing whole genomes between modern human and Denisovan populations, researchers unexpectedly discovered two distinct episodes of Denisovan genetic intermixing, or admixing, between the two. This suggests a more diverse genetic history than previously thought between the Denisovans and modern humans.