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Earliest whales gave birth on land

Fossil finds help fill in gaps in the land-to-water transition

8:04pm, February 3, 2009

It took early whales a while to fully break free of the land: For at least one species, females came back to shore to give birth, a new study suggests.

Newly described fossils of ancient whales, which include the unprecedented discovery of a pregnant female, were unearthed in the hinterlands of central Pakistan in 2000 and 2004. The findings are providing scientists with new clues about the life, times and even the possible social structure of these enigmatic creatures.

The discoveries “are rather spectacular, to say the least,” says Erich Fitzgerald, a vert

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