Paleontology

  1. Paleontology

    This dinosaur may have had a body like a duck’s

    Natovenator polydontus may have been adapted for life in the water, challenging the popular idea that all dinos were landlubbers.

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  2. Paleontology

    Mammoths may have gone extinct much earlier than DNA suggests

    Ancient DNA in sediments may be leading paleontologists astray in attempts to figure out when woolly mammoths and woolly rhinos died out, a new study argues.

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  3. Life

    This ancient worm might be an important evolutionary missing link

    A roughly 520-million-year-old fossil may be the common ancestor of a diverse collection of marine invertebrates.

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  4. Paleontology

    Dinosaur ‘mummies’ may not be rare flukes after all

    Bite marks on a fossilized dinosaur upend the idea that exquisite skin preservation must result from a carcass's immediate smothering under sediment.

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  5. Paleontology

    Pterosaurs may have evolved from tiny, fast-running reptiles

    A mysterious little ground-dwelling reptile unearthed in a Scottish sandstone over 100 years ago turns out to be part of a famous flying family.

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  6. Paleontology

    Ancient fish fossils highlight the strangeness of our vertebrate ancestors

    New fossils are revealing the earliest jawed vertebrates — a group that encompasses 99 percent of all living vertebrates on Earth, including humans.

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  7. Paleontology

    Living fast may have helped mammals like ‘ManBearPig’ dominate

    Staying in the womb for a while but being born ready to rock may have helped post-dinosaur mammals take over the planet.

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  8. Life

    Ancient ‘demon ducks’ may have been undone by their slow growth

    Mihirung birds grew to more than half a ton and took their time getting there. That slow growth may have been a vulnerability when humans got to Australia.

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  9. Paleontology

    This bizarre ancient critter has been kicked out of a group that includes humans

    A wee sea creature without an anus was thought to be the oldest deuterostome. New imaging showing it had spines led to its reclassification.

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  10. Paleontology

    50 years ago, the dinosaurs’ demise was still a mystery 

    In 1972, scientists blamed dinosaur biology for the reptiles’ demise. Years later, researchers ID’d the real killer: an apocalyptic asteroid.

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  11. Paleontology

    Mammal ancestors’ shrinking inner ears may reveal when warm-bloodedness arose

    An abrupt shift in inner ear shape of mammal ancestors 233 million years ago, during a time of climate swings, points to evolution of warm-bloodedness.

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  12. Paleontology

    A newfound dinosaur had tiny arms before T. rex made them cool

    A predecessor to Tyrannosaurus rex, Meraxes gigas had a giant head and puny but muscular arms, suggesting the limbs served some purpose.

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