paleontology

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This Dino Species Has 'Something Never Seen Before'

Fossil of dog-sized stegouros shows it had a tail that could slash, slice like an ancient Aztec weapon

(Newser) - A fossil found in Chile is from a strange-looking dog-sized dinosaur species that had a unique slashing tail weapon, scientists reported Wednesday. Some dinosaurs had spiked tails they could use as stabbing weapons, and others had tails with clubs. The new species, described in a study in the journal Nature...

Fossil Could Be Oldest Known Animal by 350M Years
Fossil Could Be Oldest
Known Animal by 350M Years
NEW STUDY

Fossil Could Be Oldest Known Animal by 350M Years

Possible remains of ancient sponge found in Canada's far north

(Newser) - Fossils discovered in the far north of Canada could push back the proven timeline of animals on Earth back by around 350 million years—a period of time longer than that between the first dinosaurs and the present day. Geologist Elizabeth Turner says the tiny fossils found in the Northwest...

For Dinosaurs, Asteroid Was Just a Final Blow
For Dinosaurs, Asteroid
Was Just a Final Blow
NEW STUDY

For Dinosaurs, Asteroid Was Just a Final Blow

Study suggests species were struggling before the big collision

(Newser) - You've heard how an asteroid strike 66 million years ago wiped out the dinosaurs . But there's more to the story, according to a new study, which suggests non-avian dinosaurs weren't doing so hot before sulfates and dust filled the atmosphere—some 10 million years before, in fact....

Australia Finds Its Biggest-Ever Dino
Dinosaur Found
in Outback
Was as Big as
Basketball Court
in case you missed it

Dinosaur Found in Outback Was as Big as Basketball Court

Australotitan is biggest dino ever found in Australia

(Newser) - "This is a fantastic beast. Imagine something the size of a basketball court walking around on land," says Scott Hocknall, part of a team of paleontologists that confirmed the discovery of the biggest dinosaur ever found in Australia. Australotitan cooperensis was between 80 and 100 feet long and...

Utah Discovery a 'Tipping Point' on T. Rexes
Mass T. Rex Death Site
Births a Terrifying Theory
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Mass T. Rex Death Site Births a Terrifying Theory

The dino predators may have hunted in packs: researchers

(Newser) - Imagine being chased by a Tyrannosaurus rex. Now imagine being chased by six. That might've been the scenario for T. rex prey, according to new research suggesting the dino predator hunted in packs like wolves. The theory stems from a site discovered in 2014 at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National...

'Eagle Shark' Swam in Ancient Seas
'Eagle Shark' Swam
in Ancient Seas
in case you missed it

'Eagle Shark' Swam in Ancient Seas

93-million-year-old shark would have resembled manta and devil rays

(Newser) - It swam slowly through the seas with a tail fin resembling those of modern sharks and side fins that stretched outward like the wings of modern birds. It's no wonder, then, that this bizarre creature, which died in what is now Mexico some 93 million years ago, has been...

Paleontologists Gain Insight Into a Dinosaur's Butt
Paleontologists Gain Insight
Into a Dinosaur's Butt
new study

Paleontologists Gain Insight Into a Dinosaur's Butt

They're able to re-create in 3D a cloacal opening

(Newser) - It's a first for paleontology, and one that might produce a giggle. For the first time, scientists have been able to describe in fine detail a dinosaur's cloaca. If you're not familiar with that body part, CNET translates: It's essentially "a jack-of-all-trades butthole." The...

Woolly Rhino Found With Organs Intact

It's one of the best-preserved Ice Age animals ever found in Siberia

(Newser) - A well-preserved Ice Age woolly rhino with many of its internal organs still intact has been recovered from permafrost in Russia's extreme north. Russian media reported Wednesday that the carcass was revealed by melting permafrost in Yakutia in August. Scientists are waiting for ice roads in the Arctic region...

'Incredible' Finds on Wolf Pup That Died 57K Years Ago

How this mummified Ice Age pup died, her last meal, and more

(Newser) - We now know a lot more about the 57,000-year-old wolf pup who still looks cute enough to pet . The mummified gray wolf discovered in Canada's Yukon territory in 2016 is the subject of a new study, revealing the female pup's internal organs are as well-preserved as her...

Dinosaur Had Features 'Like Nothing Seen in Nature'
Dinosaur Had Features
'Like Nothing Seen in Nature'
NEW STUDY

Dinosaur Had Features 'Like Nothing Seen in Nature'

Flashy birds like the peacock descended from dinosaurs like this one

(Newser) - How bizarre were the features of a dinosaur that roamed modern-day Brazil some 110 million years ago? They're "like nothing I have seen in nature before," David Martill, lead author of a study of the creature , tells the Guardian . "There are plenty of other strange dinosaurs,...

Profanity Filter Presents Challenges for Paleontologists
Conference's Profanity Filter
Is a Little Too Efficient
in case you missed it

Conference's Profanity Filter Is a Little Too Efficient

Paleontologists weren't allowed to use the word 'bone'

(Newser) - Paleontologists who gathered online for an annual conference this week encountered an unexpected challenge: For a while, they weren't allowed to use the word "bone." This wasn't some creative exercise. As the Guardian explains, the gathering of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology had to contend with...

Melting Permafrost Reveals Ice Age Bear With Fur Intact

'This is the first and only find of its kind'

(Newser) - After more than 20,000 years, melting permafrost in Siberia has yielded the amazingly well-preserved body of an Ice Age cave bear. The bear, which still has intact fur and soft tissues including its nose, was found by reindeer hunters on the Bolshoy Lyakhovsky islands in the East Siberian Sea...

We've Never Seen a Dino Stomach Preserved Like This
Dinosaur's Last Meal
Preserved Down to the Cells
NEW STUDY

Dinosaur's Last Meal Preserved Down to the Cells

Researchers 'could see the different layers of cells in a leaf fragment'

(Newser) - Scientists say they've uncovered the "best-preserved dinosaur stomach ever found to date," offering an unprecedented look at a 110-million-year-old chewed salad. It's extremely rare to find a preserved dinosaur stomach, and even rarer to find one with much evidence of diet. But the soccer-ball-size stomach of...

Frogs Hopped Around Ancient Antarctica
A Supercontinent Split.
The Frogs Ended Up Here
NEW STUDY

A Supercontinent Split. The Frogs Ended Up Here

Fossils in Antarctica are evidence of the breakup of Gondwana

(Newser) - "Frogs, nowadays, are known on all six other continents. Now we know they were also present on the seventh." That's according to Swedish scientist Thomas Mors, whose discovery of 40-million-year-old ancient horned frog fossils in Antarctica suggests frogs were transported around the globe by the breakup of...

This Dinosaur Could Move Like No Other
This Dinosaur Had
a Unique Skill
in case you missed it

This Dinosaur Had a Unique Skill

Spinosaurus spent a lot of time swimming, say researchers

(Newser) - When Nizar Ibrahim suggested in 2014 that Spinosaurus was the first known dinosaur built to swim, not everyone was convinced. Skeptics wanted a better explanation of how the giant creature would have propelled itself through the water, notes Live Science . Now, Ibrahim and other researchers say they have the answer:...

Smallest Known Dino Was a Weirdo
Smallest Known
Dino Was a Weirdo

Smallest Known Dino Was a Weirdo

99-million-year-old species weighed about as much as a couple of dollar bills

(Newser) - Scientists say they've discovered the smallest known dinosaur which, at an estimated 2 grams, was roughly "the weight of two dollar bills," per Live Science . The skull of the new birdlike species, about the size of the smallest hummingbird on Earth today, was found in a 99-million-year-old,...

Giant Parrot 'Squawkzilla' Is a First-of-Its-Kind Find

Extinct bird was more than half the height of an average human

(Newser) - Researchers believe they've found the largest known parrot to ever inhabit our planet, and it just happens to be about twice the size of the parrot it now dethrones. While the critically endangered kakapo of New Zealand can weigh close to 8 pounds, Heracles inexpectatus weighed an estimated 15....

Experts Roaring Over Rare T. Rex on eBay

Skeleton, likely of a juvenile, could be lost to science

(Newser) - What is touted as the only known fossil of a juvenile T. Rex is up for grabs on eBay—which came as quite a shock to the museum showcasing it. The 68 million-year-old skeleton found on private land in Montana in 2013 was on loan to the University of Kansas...

Wolf Pup Died 50K Years Ago, Still 'So Cute'

Wolf, caribou found in Canada provide some of the world's oldest mummified soft tissue

(Newser) - "It's so cute" is not a typical reaction upon finding a 50,000-year-old dead animal, yet it's hard to argue with paleontologist Grant Zazula's assessment. With pristine muscle, skin, and fur, the complete mummified wolf pup, believed to have died around eight weeks old, looks as...

Guy Stumbles on Evidence of Mega-Shark That Ate Whales

Schoolteacher Philip Mullaly found the shark teeth in Australia

(Newser) - Imagine strolling down the beach and discovering a razor-sharp tooth from a shark twice the size of a Great White. Well, meet Philip Mullaly: "It was an awesome creature, it would have been terrifying to come across," the amateur fossil hunter and schoolteacher tells the New York Times...

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