Tag: North America

News Bite: Basilisks in the Old(er) West!

The oldest basilisk lizard from North America, described by Jack Conrad from NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine, shows the 48 million year old animal was part of an ancient lush jungle ecosystem…in the middle of Wyoming. The beautifully preserved skull has important stories to tell about the evolution of the lizards most famous for their ability to scamper across the water, but it also reveals …

Filed under: Biogeography, Climate Change, Eocene, Eocsystem, Fossils, Lizards, North America, Paleontology, Reptiles, Systematics, Wyoming, evolution, herpetology

Video: Iguanodon, History of a Dinosaur!

Iguanodon was discovered before the word “dinosaur” was invented and the story of Iguanodon research is the story of dinosaur research as paleontologists use new fossils to test old ideas about what the animal looked like and how it moved. Was it a lumbering quadruped? A springy kangaroo reptile? A little of both? Join us as we dive into the history of paleontology and the history of Iguanodon, th …

Filed under: Cretaceous, Crystal Palace, Dinosaurs, Dollo, Europe, Feathered, Feathers, Fossils, Functional Morphology, Gideon Mantell, Herbivore, History of Science, Iguanodon, Locomotion, Maiasaura, Mantellisaurus, North America, Ornithiscian, Paleontology, Tyrannosaurus, Velociraptor, Victorian, dinosaur

Parasaurolophus baby and adult Triceratops baby and adult skulls

Episode 12 Field Guide: Growing up Dinosaur!

When we think of iconic dinosaurs, like T. rex with its massive head full of teeth, and Parasaurolophus crowned with a gigantic, tube-like crest, we’re thinking of the features of adult dinosaurs. But we know from looking around today that animals change a lot from birth to adulthood. Did T. rex always have a massive maw and Parasaurolophus a huge crest? How quickly did they grow in? What were the …

Filed under: Baby Dinosaurs, Bone Histology, California, Cretaceous, Dinosaur Joe, Dinosaur behavior, Dinosaurs, Discovery, Field Guide, Fieldwork, Finding fossils, Fossils, Growing Up, North America, Ontogeny, Paleontology, Parasaurolophus, Podcast, Raymond Alf Museum, Triceratops, Utah, Webb Schools

Quick Bite Field Guide: Weird Whales and Swimming Sloths

Marine mammals are fascinating beasts and the subject of our latest Quick Bite episode! Whales, manatees, seals, otters…they’ve all gone back to the water and evolved all kinds of spectacular adaptations to making a living in a soggy setting. Toothed whales evolved an ability to “see” the underwater world around them using echolocation – basically sonar – to track prey with high-pitched sounds a …

Filed under: Cenozoic, Cetacea, Convergence, Eocene, Field Guide, Fossils, Functional Morphology, Marine, North America, Oligocene, Paleontology, Pliocene, Podcast, South America, Xenarthra, dolphin, echolocation, marine biology, ocean, porpoise, sloth, whale

Episode 11 Field Guide: Trilobites from the Cincinnati Sea

Over 400 million years ago the oceans were teeming with life, but it didn’t look much like what you see at the aquarium or in Finding Nemo. Instead of colorful fish flitting through coral reefs, the ancient seas had giant, shelled squids darting past the icons of the early ocean: The Trilobites! Journey back to the Late Ordovician sea with Dr. Brenda Hunda, Curator of Invertebrates at the Cincinna …

Filed under: Cambrian, Field Guide, Fossils, Marine, Mass extinction, Morphometrics, North America, Ordovician, Paleontology, Paleozoic, coral reef, invertebrate, ocean life, trilobite

Quick Bite Field Guide: Terror Bird or Gentle Giant?

50 million-years ago, the heir to Tyrannosaurus stalked the forests of ancient Europe and North America, snapping up the tiny ancestors of horses, cows, and wolves in its colossal meat-cleaving beak. Gastornis was a six-foot-tall, flightless bird and the king of the food chain…or that’s what we thought. For decades paleontologists looked at the huge, parrot-like head and thought the giant bird m …

Filed under: Birds, Carnivory, Cenozoic, Comparative Anatomy, Ecology, Eocene, Europe, Field Guide, Fossils, Herbivory, Isotopes, North America, Paleontology

Quick Bite Field Guide: The Giant before the Tyrant!

In the last episode of Past Time, we featured Lythronax, the oldest-known North American tyrannosaur and a close relative of Tyrannosaurus rex. But tyrannosaurs weren’t the only big carnivores to tromp through the Mesozoic of North America. Before the tyrant lizards were huge, there was another giant terrorizing the American West: Siats! Named for a Ute mythological giant, Siats was a bus-sized ca …

Filed under: Carnivory, Cretaceous, Field Guide, Fossils, Neovenatoridae, North America, Paleontology, Siats, Systematics, T. rex, Tyrannosarus, dinosaur, theropod, tyrannosaur

Episode 9 Field Guide: New Relatives of Tyrannosaurus rex!

Tyrannosaurus rex is a dinosaur celebrity, a villain in most dinosaur movies and documentaries, but where did the massive beast come from? On November 6, 2013, a team of paleontologists including our expert in this episode, Dr. Randy Irmis from the University of Utah and the Natural History Museum of Utah, published two new skeletons of Tyrannosaurus’s close kin: Teratophoneus and Lythronax. The s …

Filed under: Cretaceous, Dinosaurs, Ecology, Field Guide, Fossils, Laramidia, Lythronax, New species, North America, Paleontology, Systematics, T. rex, Tyrannosaurus, Utah, carnivore, theropod

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