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Paleontology - Environment - 01.07.2024
The grapes that give us wine likely originated in the New World 60 million years ago
Study: Cenozoic seeds of Vitaceae reveal a deep history of extinction and dispersal in the Neotropics The ancestor of Vitoid grapes that gave rise to commercial grapes likely originated in the New World, in the tropical belt of the Americas and the Caribbean, 60 million years ago, according to a study co-authored by a University of Michigan researcher.

Paleontology - 28.06.2024
Dietary similarities between the megalodon and the great white shark
UV teams discovers dietary similarities between the megalodon and the great white shark A study led by a UV research group shows that the extinct megalodon and the white shark may have competed for trophic resources. The scientific team found similarities in the diet of both predators by analysing dental microwear.

Paleontology - 27.06.2024
How the Indo-Australian Archipelago became a biodiversity hotspot
How the Indo-Australian Archipelago became a biodiversity hotspot
The region with the greatest marine biodiversity on our planet is known as the Coral Triangle or Indo-Australian Archipelago. However, the detailed evolutionary history of this biodiversity hotspot is poorly understood. An international research team has reconstructed how biodiversity has developed over the past 40 million years.

Paleontology - Life Sciences - 11.06.2024
Rare organ preservation in Brazilian fossil fishes
Fossils in Brazil indicate a more complex evolutionary history for ray-finned fish brains than previously anticipated, according to new research. Rodrigo Tinoco Figueroa , a Brazilian doctoral candidate at the University of Michigan, and colleagues not only found well-preserved brains in late Paleozoic ray-finned fishes, they also discovered other soft tissues-such as fragments of the heart and eyes, meninges and gill filaments-a rarity in paleontology due to the scarcity of the fossil record.

Paleontology - Life Sciences - 07.06.2024
Second great ape species discovered at Hammerschmiede fossil site
Second great ape species discovered at Hammerschmiede fossil site
An international team of researchers has discovered a previously unknown ape species in the Hammerschmiede clay pit in southern Germany. Buronius manfredschmidi was found close to the great ape Danuvius guggenmosi , known as "Udo". This was about 12 million years ago the first ape with adaptations for walking upright and made the Hammerschmiede excavation site famous.

Paleontology - Life Sciences - 05.06.2024
'Missing' sea sponges discovered
’Missing’ sea sponges discovered
The discovery, published in Nature, opens a new window on early animal evolution. At first glance, the simple, spikey sea sponge is no creature of mystery. No brain. No gut. No problem dating them back 700 million years. Yet convincing sponge fossils only go back about 540 million years, leaving a 160-million-year gap in the fossil record.

Paleontology - Computer Science - 03.06.2024
Artificial intelligence closes the gaps in the fossil archive
Artificial intelligence closes the gaps in the fossil archive
The patchy fossil record makes it difficult for paleontologists to draw an accurate picture of the extent of past biodiversity and to understand how it has changed over time. A study led by Rebecca Cooper and Daniele Silvestro from the University of Fribourg shows how artificial intelligence (AI) can make this task easier .

Paleontology - 15.05.2024
Summers warm more than winters, fossil shells reveal
In a warmer climate, summers warm much faster than winters in northwestern Europe. That is the conclusion of research into fossil shells by an international team of earth scientists. With this knowledge we can better map the consequences of current global warming in the North Sea area. The researchers measured the chemical composition of fossil shells.

Paleontology - Environment - 15.05.2024
First ’warm-blooded’ dinosaurs may have emerged 180 million years ago
The ability to regulate body temperature, a trait all mammals and birds have today, may have evolved among some dinosaurs early in the Jurassic period about 180 million years ago, suggests a new study led by UCL and University of Vigo researchers. In the early 20 century, dinosaurs were considered slow-moving, "cold-blooded" animals like modern-day reptiles, relying on heat from the sun to regulate their temperature.

Paleontology - Environment - 06.05.2024
Clawed animals lived in the hammer mill
Clawed animals lived in the hammer mill
From today's perspective, they look like a cross between a horse and a gorilla: clawed animals (Chalicotheriidae) had a massive body and a horse-like head; their arms were much longer than their legs and equipped with claws. They belonged to the group of odd-toed ungulates and are thus related to modern rhinoceroses, horses and tapirs.

Paleontology - Environment - 26.04.2024
Gigantic Jurassic raptor footprints unearthed
Scientists have discovered the tracks of a 5 metre-long raptor dinosaur, challenging what was previously known about the species' size range. The tracks were found in Fujian Province in south-eastern China by an international team of researchers with palaeontologist Dr Anthony Romilio from The University of Queensland's Dinosaur Lab providing detailed analysis.

Paleontology - Life Sciences - 16.04.2024
Seed ferns: plants experimented with complex leaf vein networks 201 million years ago
Seed ferns: plants experimented with complex leaf vein networks 201 million years ago
Flowering plant-type leaf veins died out and re-evolved several times in the course of the Earth's history According to a research team led by palaeontologists from the University of Vienna, the net-like leaf veining typical for today's flowering plants developed much earlier than previously thought, but died out again several times.

Paleontology - 09.04.2024
Do some mysterious bones belong to gigantic ichthyosaurs?
Do some mysterious bones belong to gigantic ichthyosaurs?
A study carried out at the University of Bonn sheds light on a mystery that has puzzled paleontologists for 150 years Several similar large, fossilized bone fragments have been discovered in various regions across Western and Central Europe since the 19th century. The animal group to which they belonged is still the subject of much debate to this day.

Life Sciences - Paleontology - 02.04.2024
Temple bones in the skulls of dinosaurs and humans alike were formed by feeding habits
Temple bones in the skulls of dinosaurs and humans alike were formed by feeding habits
Whether human or reptile: in the skull of most terrestrial vertebrates there is a gaping hole in the temple; in the case of most reptiles, there are two. Scientists have been looking for explanations for this for 150 years. A team of researchers from the University of Tübingen and Ruhr University Bochum has now shown that the forces acting on the skull change depending on how and where food is held, bitten and chewed in the mouth - and over millions of years, these factors lead to the formation of connections and openings in the skull.

Life Sciences - Paleontology - 02.04.2024
Tree of Life for modern birds revealed
Working with colleagues at the University of Copenhagen, Australian Museum and Flinders University, Professor Simon Ho and Dr Al-Aabid Chowdhury have found that the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs was a 'big bang' for bird evolution. In a world first, a team of international scientists including three Australians, Al-Aabid Chowdhury and Professor Simon Ho from University of Sydney, and Dr Jacqueline Nguyen from Australian Museum and Flinders University, have determined the family tree of modern birds and pinpointed the timing of their evolution.

Paleontology - Environment - 21.03.2024
Rays were more diverse 150 million years ago than previously thought
Rays were more diverse 150 million years ago than previously thought
New fossil ray species discovered in Bavarica, Germany: Aellopobatis bavarica from the Late Jurassic In a new study recently published in the journal Papers in Palaeontology , an international team of scientists led by palaeobiologist Julia Türtscher from the University of Vienna has explored the puzzling world of rays that lived 150 million years ago and discovered a previously hidden diversity - including a new ray species.

Environment - Paleontology - 20.03.2024
Ancient Giant Dolphin Discovered in the Amazon
Ancient Giant Dolphin Discovered in the Amazon
Measuring between 3 to 3.5 meters, 16 million years old: Paleontologists from the University of Zurich have announced the discovery of a new species of freshwater dolphin in the Peruvian Amazon region. Surprisingly, its closest living relatives can be found in the river dolphins of South Asia.

Paleontology - 13.03.2024
Newly discovered: Fossil giant turtle named after Stephen King novel character
Newly discovered: Fossil giant turtle named after Stephen King novel character
An international research team led by Dr. Gabriel S. Ferreira from the Senckenberg Center for Human Evolution and Palaeoenvironment at the University of has described a new species of giant turtle from the late Pleistocene.

Environment - Paleontology - 07.03.2024
Earth's earliest forest revealed in Somerset fossils
Earth’s earliest forest revealed in Somerset fossils
Scientists have discovered remnants of the Earth's oldest fossil forest on the north coast of Devon and Somerset in the UK. The trees, which are around 390 million years old, are thought to have grown as part of an extensive forest covering the east coast of the Old Red Sandstone continent - part of Europe at that time.

Life Sciences - Paleontology - 04.03.2024
Study of slowly evolving 'living fossils' reveals key genetic insights
Study of slowly evolving ’living fossils’ reveals key genetic insights
Yale researchers have discovered evidence of why a fish group, considered "living fossils," has existed largely unchanged for tens of millions of years. In 1859, Charles Darwin coined the term "living fossils" to describe organisms that show little species diversity or physical differences from their ancestors in the fossil record.