Scientists have recovered the first genetic data from an extinct bird in the Caribbean, thanks to the remarkably preserved bones of a Creighton's caracara from a flooded sinkhole on Great Abaco Island.
Eumelanin -- a natural pigment found for instance in human eyes -- has, for the first time, been identified in the fossilized compound eyes of 54-million-year-old crane-flies. It was previously assumed that melanic screening pigments did not exist in arthropods.
New research by a University of Bristol palaeontology post-graduate student has revealed fresh insights into how the braincase of the dinosaur Psittacosaurus developed and how this tells us about its posture.
Bats with skulls and teeth adapted to a wide range of diets are helping scientists understand how major groups of mammals first evolved.
A new species of giant penguin -- about 1.6 metres tall -- has been identified from fossils found in Waipara, North Canterbury in New Zealand.
Recent primate research has had a heavy focus on a few charismatic species and nationally protected parks and forests, leaving some lesser known primates and their habitats at risk, according researchers at The University of Texas at Austin and Santa Clara University.
Research published this Wednesday in Scientific Reports describes Clevosaurus hadroprodon, a new reptile species from Rio Grande do Sul state in southern Brazil.
Having one of the most powerful bites in the animal kingdom, crocodiles must be able to bite hard to eat their food such as turtles, wildebeest and other large prey. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri have found that crocodiles -- and even their plant-eating ancestors -- had thin tooth enamel, a trait that is in stark contrast to humans and other hard-biting species. These findings could suggest new approaches for dealing with people's teeth.
Some fossil plants that lived in wetlands had fungi living in their roots, and others don't. To understand why, scientists waded into modern wetlands and yanked up cattails to study the fungi living in their roots. They learned that cattail roots deeper underwater have fewer fungi living in them than in drier roots. That means that the fungi present in fossil plant roots can tell us about the environment those plants lived in.
The Devonian period (419 million to 359 million years ago), called the 'age of the fishes,' saw significant evolutionary progress in plants. Researchers reporting Aug. 8 in the journal Current Biology describe the largest example of a Devonian forest, made up of 250,000 square meters of fossilized lycopsid trees, which was recently discovered in China's Anhui province. Larger than Devonian forests in Norway and the US, the fossil forest is larger than Grand Central Station.