Tag: Functional Morphology

News Bite: The evolution of ornithischian dinosaur jaws and bites!

With Past Time, Matt and I tend to focus on the new discoveries in paleontology: the new species that show up in the news, or the important specimens discovered in museum collections. These are the raw materials that feed the fires of paleontology as a science. However, observation is only the first step in the scientific method: a method that paleontologists follow. This week’s episode features t …

Filed under: Dinosaurs, Fossils, Functional Morphology, feeding, jaws

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: Dinosaurs, Dollo, Feathered, Feathers, Fossils, Functional Morphology, Gideon Mantell, Iguanodon, Locomotion, Maiasaura, Mantellisaurus, Ornithiscian, Velociraptor, Victorian

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, Field Guide, Fossils, Functional Morphology, Marine, Podcast, South America, dolphin, echolocation, marine biology, ocean, porpoise, sloth, whale

Quick Bite Field Guide: The Alien Turtle and Ancient Color

Meet Alienochelys selloumi, a giant, snorkel-nosed turtle with powerful, shell-crushing plates in its massive beak! The distant relative of the largest turtle alive today, the leatherback sea turtle, Alienochelys swam the ancient ocean of North Africa at the very end of the Age of Dinosaurs (the Late Cretaceous). It was found in the same rocks as Ocepechelon, the “whale turtle” discussed in our fi …

Filed under: Field Guide, Fossils, Functional Morphology, Marine Reptiles, Reptiles, Turtles, ocean, sea turtle

Episode 8 Field Guide: Crocodiles are the Chomping Champions!

Fossils are the raw materials of paleontology, but if we want to know how an animal moved or ate, paleontologists, like Dr. Paul Gignac, need to study living animals, too. Dr. Gignac studies crocodylians, measuring their bite forces across species and as they grow up to figure out how the strongest bite in nature evolved. Using techniques drawn from mechanical engineering and physiology, Dr. Gigna …

Filed under: Deinosuchus, Dinosaurs, Ecology, Field Guide, Functional Morphology, Paleobiology, Reptiles, alligator, biting, croc, crocodile, supercroc

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