5 Most Incredible Discoveries of the Week

Including a shipwreck search that yields a surprise
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 12, 2014 5:19 AM CDT
5 Most Incredible Discoveries of the Week
This undated image provided by the Bruce Museum shows a reconstruction image of the world's largest-ever flying bird, Pelagornis sandersi.   (AP Photo/Bruce Museum, Liz Bradford)

Insights about prehistoric creatures make the list, along with a not-so-great discovery about one of today's common animals:

  • Biggest-Ever Flying Bird Is Unearthed: New research reveals that the biggest flying bird ever discovered had a wingspan bigger than that of some small planes. The bird, named Pelagornis sandersi, lived around 25 million years ago and had a wingspan of up to 24 feet across, around twice that of the wandering albatross, the biggest flying bird around today. Its bones were unearthed at an especially fitting locale.
  • Herds of Dinosaurs Thrived in Alaska: Scientists have found a trove of tracks left behind by dinosaurs that once roamed our northernmost state—and some of them are pretty big. A paleontology team discovered a trail in the northeast corner of Denali National Park that was littered with thousands of footprints from duck-billed dinosaurs of all ages. Researchers says it's one of the best track sites ever discovered.

  • Gene Tweak Made Roosters Fat and Infertile: The breed of rooster that sires around a quarter of America's chickens hasn't been getting the job done, and a genetic tweak is to blame. Aviagen Group, the world's largest chicken breeder, made a change to the standard Ross male that has caused fertility issues. If you eat chicken, you're likely paying for the mistake.
  • Explorers Looking for Shipwreck Find Plane: A trio of explorers on the hunt for sunken ships managed to solve a six-decade-old mystery—involving a plane. The group uncovered a US Air Force C-45 plane that crashed in the east end of Lake Ontario back in 1952.
  • Oldest Known Erotic 'Graffiti' Found: Think phallic graffiti art exclusively belongs to the present? Think again. An archaeologist has uncovered what is being called the earliest erotic graffiti on the planet, in Greece. Some of it predates Athens' Acropolis, and it's not high-brow stuff.
Click to read about more discoveries. (More discoveries stories.)

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