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Early Mammals News
February 18, 2020

Top Headlines
 

Extinct Giant Ape Directly Linked to the Living Orangutan

Researchers have succeeded in reconstructing the evolutionary relationship between a two million year old giant primate and the living orangutan. It is the first time genetic material this old has ... read more

The Last Mammoths Died on a Remote Island

Isolation, extreme weather, and the possible arrival of humans may have killed off the holocene herbivores just 4,000 years ... read more

Ancient Australia Was Home to Strange Marsupial Giants, Some Weighing Over 1,000 Kg

Palorchestid marsupials, an extinct group of Australian megafauna, had strange bodies and lifestyles unlike any living ... read more

First Human Ancestors Breastfed for Longer Than Contemporary Relatives

By analyzing the fossilized teeth of some of our most ancient ancestors, scientists have discovered that the first humans significantly breastfed their infants for longer periods than their ... read more
Latest Headlines
updated 3:54pm EST

Earlier Headlines
 

Mammals' Complex Spines Are Linked to High Metabolisms; We're Learning How They Evolved

Mammals' backbones are weird. They're much more complex than the spines of other land animals like reptiles. Scientists wanted to find out how these complex backbones evolved in the first ... read more

Ancient Rhinos Roamed the Yukon

Paleontologists have used modern tools to identify the origins of a few fragments of teeth found more than four decades ago by a schoolteacher in the ... read more

Did Early Mammals Turn to Night Life to Protect Their Sperm?

Humans are diurnal -- we are active in the day and sleep at night. But diurnalism is by far the exception rather the rule in mammals. About 250-230 million years ago, the mammalian ancestors, called ... read more

Early Humans Evolved in Ecosystems Unlike Any Found Today

To understand the environmental pressures that shaped human evolution, scientists must reconstruct the ecosystems in which they lived. Because putting together the puzzle of millions-of-years-old ... read more

Dishing the Dirt on an Early Man Cave

Fossil animal droppings, charcoal from ancient fires and bone fragments litter the ground of one of the world's most important human evolution sites, new research reveals. A team of scientists ... read more

What Color Were Fossil Animals?

Scientists have evaluated fossil color reconstruction methods and proposed a new study framework that improves and expands current ... read more

Anthropologist Contributes to Major Study of Large Animal Extinction

Anthropologist contributed a large, multi-institutional study explaining how the human-influenced mass extinction of giant carnivores and herbivores of North America fundamentally changed the ... read more

Division by Subtraction: Extinction of Large Mammal Species Likely Drove Survivors Apart

A new study suggests that the extinctions of mammoths, dire wolves and other large mammal species in North America drove surviving species to distance themselves from their neighbors, reducing ... read more

Reconstructing the Evolution of All Species

By looking into fossil teeth from almost 2 million years old rhinos, researchers have launched a new molecular method for studying the evolutionary history of fossil species dating back millions of ... read more

20-Million-Year-Old Skull Suggests Complex Brain Evolution in Monkeys, Apes

New research on one of the oldest and most complete fossil primate skulls from South America shows instead that the pattern of brain evolution in this group was far more checkered. The study suggests ... read more

What a Group of Bizarre-Looking Bats Can Tell Us About the Evolution of Mammals

Bats with skulls and teeth adapted to a wide range of diets are helping scientists understand how major groups of mammals first ... read more

No Teeth Cleaning Needed: Crocodiles Shed Old Teeth, Grow New Ones

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 have found that ... read more

Permian Lizard-Like Animal Suffered from a Bone Condition Similar to Paget's Disease

A lizard-like animal that lived 289 million years ago suffered from a bone condition similar to Paget's disease, according to a new ... read more

Long-Lasting Effects of Ironwork on Mammal Distributions Over the Last Millennium

Pre-modern energy-intensive industries have had long-lasting impacts on macro-ecological patterns. A new study revealed that the impact of pre-modern ironwork starting over 1000 years ago can still ... read more

Intense Look at La Brea Tar Pits Explains Why We Have Coyotes, Not Saber-Toothed Cats

The most detailed study to date of ancient predators trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits is helping Americans understand why today we're dealing with coyotes dumping over garbage cans and not ... read more

Jurassic Fossil Shows How Early Mammals Could Swallow Like Their Modern Descendants

The 165-million-year-old fossil of Microdocodon gracilis, a tiny, shrew-like animal, shows the earliest example of modern hyoid bones in mammal ... read more

Some Extinct Crocs Were Vegetarians

Based on careful study of fossilized teeth, scientists have found that multiple ancient groups of crocodyliforms -- the group including living and extinct relatives of crocodiles and alligators -- ... read more

Blue Color Tones in Fossilized Prehistoric Feathers

Examining fossilized pigments, scientists have uncovered new insights into blue color tones in prehistoric ... read more

Pathogens May Have Facilitated the Evolution of Warm-Blooded Animals

Animals first developed fever as a response to infections: the higher body temperatures primed their immune systems. At the time, 600 million years ago, virtually all animal species were ... read more

Museum Volunteers Discover New Species of Extinct Heron at North Florida Fossil Site

When the bones of an ancient heron were unearthed at a North Florida fossil site, the find wasn't made by researchers but by two Florida Museum of Natural History volunteers. A previously ... read more

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