Exilian

Art, Writing, and Learning: The Clerisy Quarter => History, Science, and Interesting Information - The Great Library => Topic started by: Jubal on July 07, 2014, 11:46:43 PM

Title: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on July 07, 2014, 11:46:43 PM
As a sister to the Space Yays thread :)

Post current and exciting news about dinosaurs and bones and stuff here.



A first offering:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-28164063

Quote
Fossil of 'largest flying bird' identified

The fossilised remains of the largest flying bird ever found have been identified by scientists.

This creature would have looked like a seagull on steroids - its wingspan was between 6.1 and 7.4m (20-24ft).

The find is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The 25m-year-old fossil was unearthed 30 years ago in South Carolina, but it has taken until now to identify that this is a new species.

It would have been fast and very efficient”

Daniel Ksepka, curator of science at the Bruce Museum in Connecticut, said: "This fossil is remarkable both for the size, which we could only speculate on before the discovery, and for the preservation.

"The skull in particular is exquisite.

"And given the delicate nature of the bones... it is remarkable that the specimen made it to the bottom of the sea, became buried without being destroyed by scavengers, fossilised, and then was discovered before it was eroded or bulldozed away."
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Pentagathus on July 08, 2014, 08:28:35 AM
Meh, pretty sure those things are still flying around in Aberdeen.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Tom on July 08, 2014, 08:39:28 AM
That's crazy :O How would it fly?
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Pentagathus on July 08, 2014, 08:51:14 AM
Flapping its wings.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2014, 11:50:19 AM
Not much of an issue for birds 'cos of the whole hollow bone structure thing.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Tom on July 08, 2014, 03:46:35 PM
Yeah but that would still be a lot of mass for a bird to shift. Surely there would be an upper limit on the size of a bird that could fly?
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2014, 03:55:57 PM
I guess so, I don't know what it would be though.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: comrade_general on July 08, 2014, 04:34:17 PM
It could grip it by the husk.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on March 24, 2015, 11:05:55 PM
'Monster salamanders' found in fossilised mass grave
(http://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/media/images/81840000/jpg/_81840630_metoposaurusartcopyrightmarcboulaycossimaproductions.jpg)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-32016625

Quote
Scientists have discovered a new species of massive, toothy amphibian dating from 220 million years ago.

Hundreds of the creatures probably died when a lake dried up, leaving a huge jumble of bones which is now being excavated in southern Portugal.

Although related to modern salamanders, the two-metre beast probably lived more like a crocodile, snapping up fish and scrapping with rivals on the shore.

The find is reported in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.



I think they look pretty cool. Also oddly cute. :P
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: comrade_general on March 25, 2015, 12:32:12 AM
Does its mouth go all the way behind its eyeballs??
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on March 25, 2015, 01:15:35 PM
I think it goes a bit behind the eyes, but not right the way to the back of the head-plate.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on December 10, 2016, 01:02:29 AM
Super thread necro, but this is super cool:

(http://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/13B63/production/_92893708_tailbreachingsurfacewithant2blackbackground.jpg)

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The tail of a feathered dinosaur has been found perfectly preserved in amber from Myanmar.

The one-of-a-kind discovery helps put flesh on the bones of these extinct creatures, opening a new window on the biology of a group that dominated Earth for more than 160 million years.

Examination of the specimen suggests the tail was chestnut brown on top and white on its underside.

The tail is described in the journal Current Biology.

"This is the first time we've found dinosaur material preserved in amber," co-author Ryan McKellar, of the Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Canada, told the BBC News website.

Article link:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-38224564
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Pentagathus on December 11, 2016, 06:51:04 PM
It is pretty cool.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: comrade_general on December 11, 2016, 06:58:11 PM
Yay.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Clockwork on December 12, 2016, 11:18:23 PM
Isn't palaeontology when you pretend to be a doctor?
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: comrade_general on December 12, 2016, 11:52:57 PM
Ha didn't notice that until now.
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on August 05, 2017, 11:15:35 PM
A new yay spotted on the Beeb website recently: ankylosaurs were apparently probably camouflaged, which is super interesting as you wouldn't have thought they'd need it...



(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/154DB/production/_97195278_dinosauranklosaur.jpg)

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A new species of mega-herbivore dinosaur discovered in Alberta, Canada, preserves incredible details of its skin, scales and spines.

The exquisite specimen is a type of amour-plated nodosaurid ankylosaur.

It was camouflaged which suggests that, despite its tank-like appearance, it hid to avoid predation.

That such a large creature needed camouflage indicates the presence of even larger, keen-eyed meat-eating theropod dinosaurs.

Link:
http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-40815935
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Clockwork on August 06, 2017, 04:14:26 PM
Nice
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on August 06, 2017, 09:45:49 PM
I guess one of the things that interests me from this is wondering what actually drives people's ideas of what these dinos etc should look like - it's interesting to find out what the real colour schemes were, but it'd also be really interesting to work out what makes people assume or project different colour ideas in the absence of other evidence. Do we assume that things were less colourful/patterned than makes sense on a simplest-answer basis, or do we accurately project across from real-world animals in similar niches, or neither?
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Clockwork on August 07, 2017, 08:09:47 AM
That's a good point, possibly a bit of both?
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on August 07, 2017, 01:05:33 PM
Yeah... I'm sure one could do quite an interesting study on it. But I'd probably want an art historian, a psychologist, a palaeontologist, and like a hundred grand in funding minimum none of which I have to hand :/
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on October 30, 2017, 07:50:21 PM
More on dinosaur colour markings, from the BBC recently:

Quote
(https://ichef-1.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/CCA4/production/_98488325_figure2.jpg)

A dinosaur from China sported a "bandit mask" pattern in the feathers on its face, scientists have said.

Researchers came to their conclusion after studying three well-preserved fossil specimens of the extinct creature, called Sinosauropteryx. They were able to discern the dinosaur's colour patterns, showing that it had a banded tail and "counter-shading" - where animals are dark on top and lighter on their underside. The bandit mask pattern is seen in numerous animals today, from mammals - such as raccoons and badgers - to birds, such as the nuthatch.

"This is the first time it's been seen in a dinosaur and, to my knowledge, any extinct animal that shows colour bands," co-author Fiann Smithwick, from Bristol University, told BBC News.
http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-41763478

Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on February 13, 2020, 11:54:25 AM
Super giant ancient turtle yays :)

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Car-sized turtle fossils unearthed

(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/16B1E/production/_110885929_mediaitem110885897.jpg)

Fossils of a turtle the size of a car have been unearthed in what is now northern South America.

The turtle - Stupendemys geographicus - is believed to have roamed the region between 13 and 7 million years ago.

The fossils were found in Colombia's Tatacoa Desert and Venezuela's Urumaco region.

The first Stupendemys fossils were discovered in the 1970s but many mysteries have remained about the 4-metre long animal.

It was about the size and weight of a saloon car and inhabited a huge wetland across northern South America before the Amazon and Orinoco rivers were formed.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-51485011
Title: Re: Palaeontology yays
Post by: Jubal on April 30, 2020, 12:54:34 PM
A couple of new yays to report here. Firstly this rather cute burrowing mammal from the late Mesozoic Era:

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'Crazy beast' lived among last of dinosaurs

(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/64AD/production/_112037752_mammal_rtr.jpg)

A cat-sized mammal dubbed "crazy beast" lived on Madagascar among some of the last dinosaurs to walk the Earth, scientists have revealed.

The 66-million-year-old fossil is described in the journal Nature. Its discovery challenges previous assumptions that mammals were generally very small - the size of mice - at this point in their evolutionary history. Researchers say this individual animal weighed 3kg (6.6lbs) and had not reached its full adult size.

Scientists think that the badger-like creature, known as Adalatherium hui, would have burrowed. It had a large collection of nerves in the snout, making this area extremely sensitive - a feature frequently seen in burrowing animals.

Rest of article: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-52465584



And also, something I missed from mid-March (almost as if I had other things on my mind) the discovery of an important new early bird fossil, dubbed "Wonderchicken":

Quote
(https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/14950/production/_111340348_mediaitem111340347.jpg)
Fossil 'wonderchicken' could be earliest known fowl

A newly discovered fossil bird could be the earliest known ancestor of every chicken on the planet. Living just before the asteroid strike that wiped out giant dinosaurs, the unique fossil, from about 67 million years ago, gives a glimpse into the dawn of modern birds.

Birds are descended from dinosaurs, but precisely when they evolved into birds like the ones alive today has been difficult to answer. This is due to a lack of fossil data. The newly discovered - and well-preserved - fossil skull should help fill in some of the gaps.

"This is a unique specimen: we've been calling it the 'wonderchicken'," said Dr Daniel Field of the University of Cambridge.

Rest of article: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-51925335