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paleontology

  1. Childhood Validated: New Study Says Brontosaurus Existed After All

    Tree stars for everyone!

    A wide-ranging computer analysis of available dinosaur bones reached one of the most important paleontological conclusions of our time: the Brontosaurus is real, and the Apatosaurus can just deal with it. Brb—there are a bunch of Wikipedia entries I need to change to: "In your face!"

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  2. Hold Onto Your Blunts: New Study Shows Dinosaurs May Have Gotten High on Psychedelic Fungus

    Well, they're all literal stoners now.

    They've figured out how to open doors. Doors to your mind, maaaaaan.

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  3. New Study Says Ancient, Bull-Sized Relative of the Guinea Pig Used its Buckteeth As Weapons of War

    I don't believe they exist!

    Give your guinea pig ample sawdust and carrot peel tonight, for she deserves trappings befitting of a warrior: according to a study published earlier this month in the Journal of Anatomy, the largest rodent yet discovered was an ancient, bull-sized cousin of the guinea pig with strength equivalent to a modern-day tiger's. Guinea pigs are mad hard.

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  4. Tiny Child Paleontologist Knows More About Dinosaurs Than You and Shares His Wisdom

    I want to be this kid when I grow up.

    This kid is not going to be impressed by Jurassic World's featherless dinosaurs.

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  5. ThinkGeek Is Selling Dinosaur Bone Fragments and the Vertebrate Paleontology Community Is Maaaaad

    Because capitalism and dinosaurs go great together!

    If you've ever wanted to own your very own piece of a dinosaur bone, then ThinkGeek has just the product for you! You know—if you also want a whole bunch of dinosaur bone specialists to be very upset with you, that is. Apparently buying these kinds of bone fragments is a double-plus-ungood, and ThinkGeek's now facing heat from the scientific community for making them available for purchase.

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  6. New Study Closes the Evolutionary Gap Between Dinosaurs and Birds

    Hold onto your butts.

    Science has known for a while that birds and dinosaurs are evolutionarily linked, but it's been difficult to establish a direct connection between today's birds and their giant, people-hungry ancestors. Now, a new study uses the existing fossil record and several recent finds of feathered dinosaurs to draw a direct connection, so now we know how they flocked this way.

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  7. The Amazing Scientific Achievements of the Woman Who Kickstarted Paleontology

    "Thanks, Mary Anning." -Steven Spielberg [citation needed]

    Before Mary Anning and her contemporaries, it was still widely assumed that fossils were just remains from existing animals and not generally useful for science (nor put in the ground by Satan). Thought most of her work wound up being published by men because life in the early 19th century was awful, Anning made a ton of important discoveries—including what bezoar stones actually were, because she needed to see the dinosaurs' droppings.

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  8. Today In “Your Dad Naming Things,” Extinct Swamp Beast With Sensual Lips Named After Mick Jagger

    "Ummm, The Jethro Tull! The Parliament Funkadelic! The DAVE DEE, DOZY, BEAKY, MICK & TICH!"

    An extinct African swamp creature thought to have lived 19 million years ago and believed to resemble "a cross between a slender hippo and a long-legged pig" has been named after Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger.

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  9. Let Some Precocious Kids Teach You How To Pronounce Pterosaur Names

    Impress your friends! Wow your family!

    Pterosaurs are awesome, but their names sure are a mouthful. So to make sure we have all our Latin covered, the American Museum of Natural History enlisted some awesome kids to provide a quick refresher. Now listen up!

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  10. 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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  11. 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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  12. “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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  13. 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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  14. 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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  15. 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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  16. 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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  17. 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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  18. 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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  19. 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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  20. Kids Go Fishing, Catch 13,000-Year-Old Mastodon Bone Instead

    hold on to your butts

    Some kids have all the luck. 

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