Tagged: fossils

New Zealand’s fossil record suggests more species lived in warmer waters. But the current rate of warming may break this pattern - Hot off the press

Guest Author Sep 01, 2021

Tom Womack, Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington Marine organisms found in New Zealand’s past and present coastal waters. Tom Womack, CC BY-ND New Zealand may be relatively small, but its fossil record reveals a globally important ecological relationship between the number of species, their role in the ecosystem and ocean temperatures. We used New Zealand’s exemplary fossil … Read More

Fossil tooth fractures and microscopic detail of enamel offer new clues about human diet and evolution - Hot off the press

Guest Author Jul 27, 2021

Ian Towle; Carolina Loch, and Thomas Loho, University of Auckland   Teeth can tell us a lot about the evolution of prehistoric humans, and our latest study of one of our species’ close relatives may finally resolve a long-standing mystery. The genus Paranthropus is closely related to ours, Homo, and lived about one to three … Read More

Otago locals rally to save fossils from destruction - News

Guest Author Apr 15, 2021

By Kate Evans for Undark One of New Zealand’s most spectacular fossil sites originated 23.2 million years ago. It was formed in a valley dotted with small volcanoes, when rising magma deep below the Earth’s surface came into contact with groundwater. Lava and water don’t mix — they explode. The resulting detonation obliterated the surrounding forest and left … Read More

Ancient leaves preserved under a mile of Greenland’s ice – and lost in a freezer for years – hold lessons about climate change - Hot off the press

Guest Author Mar 17, 2021

Andrew Christ, University of Vermont and Paul Bierman, University of Vermont In 1963, inside a covert U.S. military base in northern Greenland, a team of scientists began drilling down through the Greenland ice sheet. Piece by piece, they extracted an ice core 4 inches across and nearly a mile long. At the very end, they pulled up something else … Read More

The Enduring Mystery of Critchfield’s Spruce - The Changing Climate

Guest Author Feb 17, 2021

Zach St. George The first and only time Steve Jackson spoke to Bill Critchfield was in the late 1980s. Critchfield, an authority on the conifers of North America, was at home recovering from a heart attack. Jackson, then a postdoctoral researcher at Brown University, had called looking for advice on how to tell jack pine from Virginia pine. Jackson … Read More

Ancient sponges or just algae? New research overturns chemical evidence for the earliest animals - Hot off the press

Guest Author Dec 01, 2020

Lennart van Maldegem, Australian National University; Benjamin Nettersheim, Max Planck Institute; Christian Hallmann, Max Planck Institute; Ilya Bobrovskiy, California Institute of Technology, and Jochen Brocks, Australian National University Sponges are the simplest of animals, and they may stand at the root of all complex animal life on Earth, including us humans. Scientists study the evolution of the earliest sponges, hundreds … Read More

Scientists thought these seals evolved in the north. 3-million-year-old fossils from New Zealand suggest otherwise - Hot off the press

Guest Author Nov 12, 2020

James Patrick Rule, Monash University; Erich Fitzgerald, Museums Victoria; Felix Georg Marx, Te Papa Tongarewa, and Justin W. Adams, Monash University A fossil discovery in New Zealand has revealed a new species of monk seal that once called Australasia home. We introduce the three million-year-old seal, Eomonachus belegaerensis, in a paper published today in the Proceedings of the Royal … Read More

Ardipithecus and bipedal walking - BioBlog

Alison Campbell Feb 25, 2019

The hominid known as “Ardi” (a specimen of Ardipithecus ramidus) was discovered in 1994, at a site near Ethiopia’s Awash River. Once excavated, it turned out that this was – for its age – a remarkably complete specimen: 125 fossilised bones, comprising most of the skull, teeth, hands & feet, pelvis, and the lower sections of the arms & legs.  This … Read More

Walk this Way! Lizards may have run on two feet as early as 110 million years ago - News

Jean Balchin Feb 20, 2018

A recent study in Scientific Reports has concluded that lizards may have run on two feet (bipedally) as early as 110 million years ago. Although typical lizard locomotion is quadrupedal (on four feet), bipedalism is a behaviour exhibited by over 50 species of lizards. During bipedal locomotion, the forelimbs leave the ground and the trunk of the lizard is elevated; essentially the lizard … Read More

Whole Lotta Rosie! Ancient fossil found in Waipara - News

Jean Balchin Feb 19, 2018

Canterbury Museum is now the proud home of the world’s oldest penguin fossil and the world’s most complete specimen of any bird (also a penguin) that lived during the 10 million years following the extinction of the dinosaurs. Left to Right: Dr Paul Scofield, Dr Vanesa De Pietri and Dr Gerald Mayr with the skull of Rosie’s Penguin. The story … Read More