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paleontology

  1. Paleontologists Announce Discovery of “Pinocchio Rex”

    I guess "Cyranno de Bergerex" was taken?

    A study published today in Nature Communications reveals the discovery of Qianzhousaurus sinensis, a long-snouted "cousin" of T-rex who stalked the Earth 66 million years ago and likely lived in constant embarrassment over his nose-to-arm ratio.

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  2. Meet The Eleven-Foot “Chicken From Hell”

    White meat doesn't seem so lame now, does it?

    Apparently Tyrannosaurus Rex had a vaguely ridiculous but still intimidating foe: an 11-foot long feathered dinosaur named after a Mesopotamian monster that paleontologists have uncovered in Hell Creek, Dakota. Chickens: what happened?

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  3. “Tiny” T-Rex Discovered In the Arctic

    Size is relative.

    There are over 50 different varies of T Rex, but the most recently discovered version of the dinosaur king is puzzling for its size as well as the surprising location where its fossil was unearthed. Meet Arctic "polar bear lizard" Nanuqsaurus hoglundi, the baby brother of them all.

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  4. Ye Olde Shark Nursery Discovered at Illinois Power Plant, Proves Prehistoric Sharks Migrated

    Insert obligatory Sharknado joke here.

    When someone says "Northeastern Illinois", most of us don't automatically think "Shark Nursery". Once again, science is proving most of us wrong.

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  5. I’m Sorry You Were Turned Into Fossil, Baby Dinosaur

    Obligatory Baby Animal of the Day

    This dinosaur, estimated to be just 3-years-old at the time of its death, was uncovered in Canada recently in an extremely well-preserved condition. LiveScience writes, "The fossil is the smallest intact skeleton ever found from a group of horned, plant-eating dinosaurs known as ceratopsids, a group that includes the iconic Triceratops." And if like me, you've never seen a baby dinosaur skeleton before, fret not, they are very rare. "The big ones just preserve better: They don't get eaten, they don't get destroyed by animals," study co-author Philip Currie, told LiveScience. The skeleton has been identified as a Chasmosaurus belli. (via io9, image credit: Philip J. Currie, Robert Holmes, Michael Ryan Clive Coy, Eva B. Koppelhus) Are you following The Mary Sue on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, & Google +?

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  6. Science Says: People Buried Vampires, Tyrannosaurs Hunted Prey

    And Now For Something Completely Different

    Today in part seven of our ongoing series Things People Dug Out of the Ground, new evidence of Slavic vampire burial practices and proof that Tyrannosaurus rex wasn't the cowardly scavenger that know it all little kid tried to convince you it was back in the third grade.

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  7. Scissor-Handed Fossil Named in Honor of Johnny Depp, History’s Greatest Scissor-Handed Actor

    On a recent expedition, researchers from Imperial College London discovered an ancient fossil from Earth's cambrian period that had never been seen before. The long lost relative of animals like lobsters and scorpions had one clear connection to both of those animals -- a set of arms ending in scissor-like pincers. The appendages instantly reminded team members of the iconic character of Edward Scissorhands, and thus, Kooteninchela deppi -- the first fossil creature named in honor of actor Johnny Depp -- was born.

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  8. New Fossils Reveal the Mouthparts, Nervous System of Ancient Horror

    The hypothetical ancestor of all mammals might be all cuddly, fuzzy, and warm, but its hideous arch-nemesis must have been an arthropod that spawned all the crustaceans, insects, and spiders we rightly fear today. In a new discovery concerning one such ancestor, scientists have found fossils in South China that finally reveal the complex "feeding limbs" and nervous system hidden beneath its shell. Until now, all we had was the shape of the creature's body and head, which was more than terrifying enough.

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  9. Not So Fast: Fossilized Dinosaur Stampede Is Actually A Fossilized Dinosaur River Crossing

    For year's, Australia's Lark Quarry has been cited as a rare example of a dinosaur stampede frozen in time, the tracks this massive "running of the giant lizards" left behind captured forever in stone. A new analysis of the tracks, though suggests...not so much. According to researchers from the University of Queensland, the tracks have been misread for years, and represent not a sudden stampede, but a popular river crossing used by many dinosaurs over many years. Because dinosaurs do not wait for conditions to improve, and they most certainly do not pay to cross at a bridge. Dinosaurs ford the goddamn river.

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  10. Fossil Bird Had Hardened Teeth for Crushing Hard-Shelled Prey

    While modern birds have beaks for eating, their ancient ancestors still had toothsome mouths, full of the sharp dental legacies of their dinosaur past. Paleontologists have discovered a new species of early bird, though, and rather than getting the worm, it seemed to prey on hard-shelled animals like snails and crabs. That left it with an evolutionary first -- a mouthful of teeth meant for crushing prey, not tearing flesh. It's an unexpected discovery, suggesting that even as some birds were losing their teeth to evolution, others were developing new kinds of teeth to help them become more specialized hunters.

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