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14 09 2021, 17:12:18 - Modern snakes evolved from a few survivors of dino-killing asteroid

A new study suggests that all living snakes evolved from a handful of species that survived the giant asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs and most other living things at the end of the Cretaceous. The authors say that this devastating extinction event was a form of 'creative destruction' that allowed snakes to diversify into new niches, previously filled by their competitors.

 

09 09 2021, 00:05:45 - Ancient teeth reveal surprising diversity of Cretaceous reptiles at Argentina fossil site

Where skeletons are rare, isolated teeth can flesh out our understanding of ancient reptile-dominated ecosystems, according to a new study.

 

09 09 2021, 00:04:46 - Who was king before Tyrannosaurus? Uzbek fossil reveals new top dino

A new dinosaur from the lower Upper Cretaceous of Uzbekistan, Ulughbegsaurus uzbekistanensis, was described from a single maxilla fossil. The research team estimated that this carcharodontosaurian weighed over 1000 kg and measured 7.5--8.0 meters in length, much larger than previously described predators from the same formation. The fossil's age, location, and co-occurrence with the smaller tyrannosaurid Timurlengia shed light on the transition from carcharodontosaurians to tyrannosaurids occupying the apex predator niche.

 

25 08 2021, 20:30:32 - Fossils illuminate dinosaur evolution in eastern North America

Tyrannosaurus rex, the fearsome predator that once roamed what is now western North America, appears to have had an East Coast cousin. A new study describes two dinosaurs that inhabited Appalachia -- a once isolated land mass that today composes much of the eastern United States -- about 85 million years ago: an herbivorous duck-billed hadrosaur and a carnivorous tyrannosaur.

 

24 08 2021, 14:34:43 - Tyrannosaurus rex?s jaw had sensors to make it an even more fearsome predator

Tyrannosaurus rex was not just a huge beast with a big bite, it had nerve sensors in the very tips of its jaw enabling it to better detect -- and eat -- its prey, a new study finds.

 

19 08 2021, 16:26:57 - Study of tyrannosaur braincases shows more variation than previously thought

Scientists have used CT scans to digitally reconstruct the brain, inner ear, and surrounding bones (known as the braincase) of two well-preserved Daspletosaurus specimens. This massive tyrannosaur lived in the coastal forest of what is now Alberta around 75 million years ago -- preceding the more famous T. rex by about 10 million years. Their results suggest that dinosaur brains, and the bones enclosing and protecting, them vary more than previously thought within species, or among closely related species.

 

18 08 2021, 14:39:45 - Discovery of prehistoric mammals suggests rapid evolution of mammals after dinosaur extinction

Scientists have discovered three new species of ancient creatures from the dawn of modern mammals that hint at rapid evolution immediately after the mass extinction of the dinosaurs.

 

10 08 2021, 20:31:02 - Shark diversity unaffected when the dinosaurs were wiped out, study finds

A global catastrophe 66 million years ago led to the extinction of all non-avian dinosaurs, and large marine reptiles like mosasaurs and plesiosaurs. But what happened to the sharks? According to a new study, shark-tooth diversity remained relatively constant across the mass extinction event at the end of the Cretaceous.

 

09 08 2021, 16:04:48 - Researchers find a ?fearsome dragon? that soared over outback Queensland

Australia's largest flying reptile has been uncovered, a pterosaur with an estimated seven-meter wingspan that soared like a dragon above the ancient, vast inland sea once covering much of outback Queensland.

 

30 07 2021, 22:54:36 - Bird brains left other dinosaurs behind

Research on a newly discovered bird fossil found that a unique brain shape may be why the ancestors of living birds survived the mass extinction that claimed all other known dinosaurs.

 

06 07 2021, 17:53:26 - Sharp size reduction in dinosaurs that changed diet to termites

Dinosaurs were generally huge, but a new study of the unusual alvarezsaurs show that they reduced in size about 100 million years ago when they became specialized ant-eaters.

 

06 07 2021, 17:53:12 - New fossil sheds light on evolution of how dinosaurs breathed

An international team of scientists has used high-powered X-rays at the European Synchrotron to show how an extinct South African 200-million-year-old dinosaur, Heterodontosaurus tucki, breathed.

 

30 06 2021, 18:54:23 - Digging into the molecules of fossilized dinosaur eggshells

Dinosaurs roamed the Earth more than 65 million years ago, and paleontologists and amateur fossil hunters are still unearthing traces of them today. The minerals in fossilized eggs and shell fragments provide snapshots into these creatures' early lives, as well as their fossilization processes. Now, researchers have analyzed the molecular makeup of fossilized dinosaur eggshells from Mexico, finding nine amino acids and evidence of ancient protein structures.

 

29 06 2021, 19:05:18 - Dinosaurs were in decline before the end

The death of the dinosaurs 66 million years ago was caused by the impact of a huge asteroid on the Earth. However, paleontologists have continued to debate whether they were already in decline or not before the impact. Scientists now show that they were already in decline for as much as ten million years before the final death blow.

 

24 06 2021, 17:44:34 - Research team discovers Arctic dinosaur nursery

Images of dinosaurs as cold-blooded creatures needing tropical temperatures could be a relic of the past. Scientists have found that nearly all types of Arctic dinosaurs, from small bird-like animals to giant tyrannosaurs, reproduced in the region and likely remained there year-round.

 

18 06 2021, 19:40:33 - Footprints discovered from the last dinosaurs to walk on UK soil

Footprints from at least six different species of dinosaur -- thought to be the very last dinosaurs to walk on UK soil 110 million years ago -- have been found in Kent.

 

17 06 2021, 16:12:27 - When tyrannosaurs dominated, medium-sized predators disappeared

A new study shows that medium-sized predators all but disappeared late in dinosaur history wherever Tyrannosaurus rex and its close relatives rose to dominance. In those areas -- lands that eventually became central Asia and Western North America -- juvenile tyrannosaurs stepped in to fill the missing ecological niche previously held by other carnivores.

 

02 06 2021, 15:14:09 - Young T. rexes had a powerful bite, capable of exerting one-sixth the force of an adult

Scientists have experimentally measured the bite force of adult T. rexes but not of younger tyrannosaurs. Fossils with juvenile bite marks have now allowed experts to experimentally test how hard juveniles could chomp. Though their bite force is one-sixth that of an adult, it is still stronger than that of living hyenas. The measurement is higher than previous estimates, suggesting a different ecological niche for these youngsters.

 

17 05 2021, 18:49:22 - Mammals in the time of dinosaurs held each other back

Scientists discover that dinosaurs were not the main competition for mammals during the time of the dinosaurs, challenging previously held ideas about evolution.

 

14 05 2021, 19:41:33 - Herbivores developed powerful jaws to digest tougher plants after the mass extinctions

The evolution of herbivores is linked to the plants that survived and adapted after the 'great dying', when over 90% of the world's species were wiped out 252 million years ago.

 

13 05 2021, 16:00:33 - Ankle and foot bone evolution gave prehistoric mammals a leg up

The evolution of ankle and foot bones into different shapes and sizes helped mammals adapt and thrive after the extinction of the dinosaurs, a study suggests.

 

11 05 2021, 22:07:27 - Newly described horned dinosaur from New Mexico was the earliest of its kind

With a frilled head and beaked face, Menefeeceratops sealeyi lived 82 million years ago, predating its relative, Triceratops.

 

11 05 2021, 18:38:12 - New ancient shark discovered

Scientists describe a fossil skeleton of an ancient shark, which is assigned to a new, previously unknown genus and species.

 

27 04 2021, 18:24:22 - New duckbilled dinosaur discovered in Japan

An international team of paleontologists has identified a new genus and species of hadrosaur or duck-billed dinosaur, Yamatosaurus izanagii, on one of Japan's southern islands. The fossilized discovery yields new information about hadrosaur migration, suggesting that the herbivors migrated from Asia to North America instead of vice versa. The discovery also illustrates an evolutionary step as the giant creatures evolved from walking upright to walking on all fours.

 

22 04 2021, 16:28:36 - Fat-footed tyrannosaur parents could not keep up with their skinnier adolescent offspring

New research suggests juvenile tyrannosaurs were slenderer and relatively faster for their body size compared to their multi-ton parents.

 

16 04 2021, 18:01:10 - Tiny cat-sized stegosaur leaves its mark

A single footprint left by a cat-sized dinosaur around 100 million years ago has been discovered in China by an international team of palaeontologists.

 

15 04 2021, 20:26:23 - How many T. rexes were there? Billions

With fossils few and far between, paleontologists have shied away from estimating the size of extinct populations. But scientists decided to try, focusing on the North American predator T. rex. Using data from the latest fossil analyses, they concluded that some 20,000 adults likely roamed the continent at any one time, from Mexico to Canada. The species survived for perhaps 2.5 million years, which means that about 2.5 billion lived and died overall.

 

02 04 2021, 15:59:49 - How the Chicxulub impactor gave rise to modern rainforests

The asteroid that took out the dinosaurs left the planet in darkness. What did rainforests in South America look like before the impact, and how did they change as a result?

 

31 03 2021, 03:09:56 - The 'one who causes fear' - new meat-eating predator discovered

Superbly preserved braincase of this new species is an important find - it suggests there was a greater diversity and abundance of abelisaurids late in dinosaurs' era than previously thought.

 

17 03 2021, 02:46:45 - How life on land recovered after 'The Great Dying'

A new study shows in detail how life recovered from 'The Great Dying' in comparison to two smaller extinction events. The international study team showed for the first time that this mass extinction was harsher than other events due to a major collapse in diversity. Ultimately, characterizing communities -- especially those that recovered successfully -- provides valuable insights into how modern species might fare as humans push the planet to the brink.

 

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