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Dinosaurs

Flocking genomes! (bird ancestry resolved!)

Flocking genomes! (bird ancestry resolved!)



When the birds' success is measured, it appears as a fairy tale of opportunity as the dinosaur niches became vacant. They grabbed it with both claws and pecked their way to the top-flight!

Satao, the elephant king, is killed

Satao, the elephant king, is killed

Why should we mourn an African elephant? Maybe because they mourn their own dead. Or better, because the environments of Africa today contains a mere 10,000, reducing annually by a massive number. The Chinese have to stop their trade in many countries and we have to fight for our elephants very hard. Otherwise, all 3 species will be extinct, like the mammoths.

Fantastic ancient fauna precedes mammal evolution

Fantastic ancient fauna precedes mammal evolution



Animals of unfamiliar as well as familiar types took up niches in the ancient ecosystems, as birds and mammals developed and, of course, feathered dinosaurs ruled the roost!

Woolly mammoth range dynamics are discovered

Woolly mammoth range dynamics are discovered

The human influence is discounted as the last continental mammoths died out, being unable to survive in refuges that previously had functioned to ensure their survival.

Tyrannosaur that Swam in the Shallow End

Tyrannosaur that Swam in the Shallow End

Could a tyrannosaur wade or swim after prey? While the two-legged dinosaurs were taller and better able to cross water than some four legged species, there is little evidence to assess how they dealt with hunting or migrating in water.

Does de-extinction stink?

Does de-extinction stink?

Whether mammoth or tiger sub-species, mouse or marsupial, there are many arguments for 'de-extinction, or 'bringing back' species that have slipped through the net of conservationists.

How mammals got so big

How mammals got so big

1031 large orders of the Mammalia, excluding whales and bats, have been followed during the Coenozoic since dinosaurs disappeared and some small mammals appeared.

New plant-eating dwarf dinosaur discovered - Pegomastax africanus

New plant-eating dwarf dinosaur discovered - Pegomastax africanus



Pegomastax africanus, a new species of tiny plant-eating dinosaur under two feet long has been found from South African fossils.

Two disasters may have killed the dinosaurs

Two disasters may have killed the dinosaurs

Dinosaurs may have been wiped out by the effects of volcanic eruptions followed by an asteroid 300,000 years later, say American researchers.

Placentals ruled before the Cretaceous

Placentals ruled before the Cretaceous



Theropod dinosaurs ruled the earth then died out in the Cretaceous, leaving the little mammals to diversify. Many genomes are now examinable for signs of diversification in these species' past.

When dinosaurs ruled the Pampas

When dinosaurs ruled the Pampas

In Patagonia, which was part of southern Gondwanaland, a very early complete (almost) theropod dinosaur example has been found from the middle of the Jurassic period, 40 million years before any relative.

The Dwarf Mammoth of Crete: Mammuthus Creticus

The Dwarf Mammoth of Crete: Mammuthus Creticus



The smallest species of mammoth that ever existed lived on Crete. Fossils of Mammuthus creticus, a dwarf mammoth, were discovered on the Greek island.

Bonaparte the bird-like dinosaur - Bonapartenykus ultimus

Bonaparte the bird-like dinosaur - Bonapartenykus ultimus

Fossils from a new bird-like dinosaur species have been discovered in Patagonia. At 70 million years old, 'Bonaparte' or Bonapartenykus ultimus has fascinated palaeontologists and closely resembles Patagonykus.

The Ice Age Elephant - Mammuthus primigenius

The Ice Age Elephant - Mammuthus primigenius



Yuka, a young mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius), was found preserved in the permafrost of Siberia. Was this mammoth killed by lions or humans and why did the mammoth become extinct? Over 10,000 years later, scientists search for answers.

Feathered dinosaur discovered in China - Yutyrannus huali

Feathered dinosaur discovered in China - Yutyrannus huali

A new species of feathered dinosaur has been discovered by palaeontologists in China. Yutyrannus huali or 'beautiful feathered tyrant' is the largest feathered dinosaur species discovery to date.

Mammoth cloning possible

Mammoth cloning possible

Japan and Russia are collaborating at last. It's all on behalf of a mammoth found a few months ago in Batagay in the Sakha Republic (in Siberia). The search for material is a result of the long-standing cooperation between Kinki University and the Mammoth Museum in the city of Yakutsk.

Osteoderms storing minerals helped huge dinosaurs survive

Osteoderms storing minerals helped huge dinosaurs survive

Some of the biggest dinosaurs on earth used minerals stored in bones under their skin (osteoderms) in times of crisis or hardship, a study shows.

Who cares about the Late Cretaceous Epoch

Who cares about the Late Cretaceous Epoch

A new theory about climate change at the end of the Late Cretaceous Epoch. In a recent conversation, one of my friends - let's call him X - argued that we waste too much money in pointless scientific studies. I mean - he said - who cares what killed the dinosaurs? They have been dead for a long time, period.

Bringing up (T. rex) Baby

Bringing up (T. rex) Baby



Five brave researchers have completed a computer analysis of Tyrannosaurus rex, looking especially at the implications for locomotion, ontogeny and growth. Giant dinosaurs grew quickly as far as we know, and the process is ultimately fascinating to everyone. From a 10 kg hatch weight to the 6000 kg adult Tyrannosaurus rex in 20 years is a speedy growth of a kind rarely found outside theropod dinosaurs.

Oldest woolly rhino emerges from frozen wilderness

Oldest woolly rhino emerges from frozen wilderness

An expedition to some of Tibet's remotest and most inhospitable country has yielded a wonderful result in the shape of a previously unknown giant woolly rhino fossil. At 3.7 million years old, it's also the oldest woolly rhino ever found by some distance, predating the previous earliest find by some 1.1 million years.

Did icy-methane bring on the age of the dinosaur?

Did icy-methane bring on the age of the dinosaur?



The mass extinction 200 million years ago, that paved the way for the rise of the dinosaurs, could have been caused by a massive belch of methane, say scientists in a paper just published online on ScienceExpress. Plant remains show that the atmosphere was rapidly filled with carbon, which could have come from CO2-driven warming, releasing the methane stored in the cold sub-sea sediments.

New research suggests dinosaurs were warm blooded and active

New research suggests dinosaurs were warm blooded and active

Tiny holes in bones show creatures were not sluggish as often thought. New Research at Australia's Adelaide University suggests that contrary to some beliefs, dinosaurs were active and even fast-moving creatures, not cold-blooded and sluggish.

Toothy-thermometers take dino's temperature for the first time

Toothy-thermometers take dino's temperature for the first time



A pioneering paper in today's Science has been able to put a number to the temperature-chart of 150 million-year old dinosaurs - using enamel from their teeth. Two larger dinosaurs species have had their temperatures taken, showing a warm 96-100°F - but more work is needed with their smaller cousins to settle the warm-blooded vs cold-blooded debate.

Is the sixth mass extinction of life on earth already happening?

Is the sixth mass extinction of life on earth already happening?

The next mass extinction? Are humans the cause of the planet's sixth mass loss of species on a scale of the events that wiped out the dinosaurs? Scientists believe that we certainly will be if all creatures classified now as critically endangered are lost, but there is still time to avert the crisis.

Scavenger T.rex much more like a hyena than a lion

Scavenger T.rex much more like a hyena than a lion



An epic Montana fossil bed census suggests Tyrannosaurus rex was more of an opportunistic scavenger like a hyena, than an apex predator like a lion. This is the largest study of its kind in the world and the first complete picture of an ancient ecosystem dominated by dinosaurs.

'Thunderthighs' - a new species of dinosaur discovered

'Thunderthighs' - a new species of dinosaur discovered

A new species of dinosaur, Brontomerus, literally 'thunderthighs', has been found in a quarry in Utah, USA. Named for it's extremely large thigh muscles, the larger than elephant-sized beast may have used them to kick fight predators or rivals.

Did some dinosaurs survive the mass extinction?

Did some dinosaurs survive the mass extinction?



A new method of dating indicates that a New Mexico dinosaur was alive 700,000 years after the ''mass extinction'' of all the others. Is it possible that the previously accepted date is wrong? Researchers from the University of Alberta have cast shadow of doubt on this timescale after they examined a fossilised hadrosaur bone that was discovered in New Mexico.

How invasive species can trigger mass extinctions

How invasive species can trigger mass extinctions

Researchers from Ohio suggest that human activity that is allowing the introduction of invasive species into ecosystems tcould potentially lead to the Eath's sixth mass extinction. 65 million years ago dinosaurs dominated the Earth. Global temperatures were between six and 14 degrees Celsius warmer than at present and sea levels were over 300 metres higher. 40% of the present land mass was under the sea.

New Research Suggests How Pterodactyls Really Flew

New Research Suggests How Pterodactyls Really Flew

Engineer provides new insight into pterodactyl flight by building epoxy resin and carbon fibre wings. Giant pterosaurs – ancient reptiles that flew over the heads of dinosaurs – were at their best in gentle tropical breezes, soaring over hillsides and coastlines or floating over land and sea on thermally driven air currents, according to new research from the University of Bristol.