Paleonews

Il blog dedicato ai Paleontologi !!!!

2009-07-20 – Chiba, Japan: Dinosaur show

Dinosaur show in Japan – see the photogallery

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Dinosauri, “il miracolo dei deserti”

Un lavoratore sostiene la testa della riproduzione di un Paralititan durante la preparazione della mostra ‘Dinosaur Expo 2009 – The Miracle of Deserts’, che apre oggi a Chiba vicino a Tokyo. In mostra per due mesi oltre 260 pezzi

see the photogallery

Afrovenator Abakensis

Afrovenator Abakensis

luglio 20, 2009 Posted by | Mostre & Fiere, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , , | 1 commento

2009-09-03 – Australia: 3 nuovi dinosauri (Australia, 3 new dinosaurs)

Fossili di 3 grandi dinosauri scoperti in Australia

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Fossili di tre nuove specie di dinosauri sono stati scoperti in Australia, di cui quello di un carnivoro più grande del Velociraptor dei film di Jurassic Park, lasciando intendere che l’Australia potrebbe avere un passato preistorico più complesso di quanto si pensi.

I tre fossili, due di erbivori e uno di un carnivoro — i primi resti di grandi dinosauri rinvenuti dal 1981 — sono stati trovati nel Queensland e risalgono al Cretaceo, 98 milioni di anni fa.

“Questa scoperta ci fa conoscere non solo due affascinanti giganti dal collo lungo del continente australiano antico, ma anche il nostro primo grande predatore” ha detto oggi il paleontologo John Long, del Museo Victoria.

Il paleontologo Ben Kear dell’Università La Trobe di Melbourne ha detto che la scoperta apre la strada a nuovi studi sui dinosauri australiani e il loro habitat.

“L’Australia è una delle grandi risorse poco sfruttate per la comprensione della vita nel periodo dei dinosauri”, ha detto Kear. “Questo … farà sicuramente crescere l’interesse nelle finora incomplete ma rilevanti scoperte in questo continente”.

fonte:

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Triple Fossil Find Puts Australia Back On The Dinosaur Map

ScienceDaily (July 3, 2009) — Scientists have discovered three new species of Australian dinosaur discovered in a prehistoric billabong in Western Queensland.

Artistic representations of the three new Australian dinosaur taxa: Australovenator (top); Wintonotitan (middle); Diamantinasaurus (bottom). (Credit: Artwork by: T. Tischler, Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History / Scott A. Hocknull, Matt A. White, Travis R. Tischler, Alex G. Cook, Naomi D. Calleja, Trish Sloan, David A. Elliott. New Mid-Cretaceous (Latest Albian) Dinosaurs from Winton, Queensland, Australia. PLoS ONE, 2009; 4 (7): e6190 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0006190)

Artistic representations of the three new Australian dinosaur taxa: Australovenator (top); Wintonotitan (middle); Diamantinasaurus (bottom). (Credit: Artwork by: T. Tischler, Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History / Scott A. Hocknull, Matt A. White, Travis R. Tischler, Alex G. Cook, Naomi D. Calleja, Trish Sloan, David A. Elliott. New Mid-Cretaceous (Latest Albian) Dinosaurs from Winton, Queensland, Australia. PLoS ONE, 2009; 4 (7): e6190 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0006190)

Reporting on July 3 in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal, PLoS ONE, Scott Hocknull and colleagues at the Queensland Museum and the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History describe the fossils of three new mid-Cretaceous dinosaurs from the Winton Formation in eastern Australia: two giant, herbivorous sauropods and one carnivorous theropod, all of which are to be unveiled in Queensland on July 3. The three fossils add to our knowledge of the Australian dinosaurian record, which is crucial for the understanding of the global paleobiogeography of dinosaurian groups.

Australia’s dinosaurian fossil record is extremely poor, compared with that of other similar-sized continents, such as South America and Africa. However, the mid-Cretaceous Winton Formation in central western Queensland has, in recent years, yielded numerous fossil sites with huge potential for the discovery of new dinosaurian taxa. Between 2006 and 2009, extensive excavations have yielded many well-preserved dinosaur fossils, as well as the remains of other contemporaneous fauna.

In a single, comprehensive, publication, Hocknull and colleagues describe the remains of three individual dinosaur skeletons, found during joint Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum and Queensland Museum digs in two different sites in the Winton Formation. They represent three new genera and species of dinosaur: two giant herbivorous sauropods and a carnivorous theropod.

The carnivore, named by the authors on the paper Australovenator wintonensis (nicknamed “Banjo”) is the most complete meat-eating dinosaur found in Australia, to date and sheds light on the ancestry of the largest-ever meat-eating dinosaurs, the carcharodontosaurs, a group of dinosaurs that became gigantic, like Giganotosaurus.

“The cheetah of his time, Banjo was light and agile,” said lead author Scott Hocknull. “He could run down most prey with ease over open ground. His most distinguishing feature was three large slashing claws on each hand. Unlike some theropods that have small arms (think T. rex), Banjo was different; his arms were a primary weapon.

“He’s Australia’s answer to Velociraptor, but many times bigger and more terrifying.”

The skeleton of Australovenator solves a 28-year-old mystery surrounding an ankle bone found in Victoria, which was originally classified as a dwarf Allosaurus, although this classification remained controversial until the discovery of Australovenator—the researchers are now able to confirm that the ankle bone belonged to the lineage that led to Australovenator.

The two plant-eating theropods, named Witonotitan wattsi (“Clancy”) and Diamantinasaurus matildae (“Matilda”), are different kinds of titanosaur (the largest type of dinosaur ever to have lived). While Witonotitan represents a tall, gracile animal, which might have fitted into a giraffe-like niche, the stocky, solid Diamantinasaurus represents a more hippo-like species.

All three dinosaurs are nicknamed after characters from a world-famous, Australian poet. Banjo Patterson composed Waltzing Matilda in 1885 in Winton, where the song was also first performed (and where the fossils were discovered). Waltzing Matilda is now considered to be Australia’s national song.

In a quirky twist of fate, the song Waltzing Matilda describes the unfortunate demise of a swag-man, who steals a jumbuck (sheep) but is driven to leap into a billabong (an Australian word for a small oxbow lake) to avoid being captured by the police. He ends up drowning in the billabong alongside the stolen sheep.

Banjo and Matilda were found buried together in what turns out to be a 98-million-year-old billabong. Whether they died together or got stuck in the mud together remains a mystery; however, echoing the song, both predator and possible prey met their end at the bottom of a billabong, 98 million years ago. This shows that processes that were working in the area over the last 98 million years are still there today. “Billabongs are a built-in part of the Australian mind,” said Hocknull, “because we associate them with mystery, ghosts and monsters.”

The finding and documentation of the fossils was a 100% Australian effort. Both Matilda and Banjo were prepared by Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum thanks to thousands of hours of volunteer work and philanthropy.

“This is the only place in Australia where you can come off the street and be taught to be a palaeontologist and find, excavate and prepare your own part of Australian natural history,” said Hocknull. The dinosaurs will now be part of a museum collection and this effort will enable future generations of scientists to be involved in a new wave of dinosaur discoveries and to bring the general public in touch with their own natural heritage.”

This collaborative effort links closely with PLoS ONE’s philosophy of making science freely accessible to the general public. “One of my major motivations for submitting to PLoS ONE was the fact that my research will reach a much wider community, including the hundreds of volunteers and public who gave their time and money to the development of natural history collections,” said Hocknull. “They are the backbone of our work (excuse the pun) and they usually never get to see their final product because they rarely subscribe to scientific journals.”

All three new taxa, along with some fragmentary remains from other taxa, indicate a diverse Early Cretaceous sauropod and theropod fauna in Australia, and the finds will help provide a better understanding of the Australian dinosaurian record, which is, in turn, crucial for the understanding of the global palaeobiogeography of dinosaurian groups.

The authors agree that even though hundreds of bones have already been found at the site, these fossils are just the tip of the iceberg. “Many hundreds more fossils from this dig await preparation and there is much more material left to excavate,” they said. Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum and Queensland Museum staff and volunteers will continue to dig at this and other sites in 2010.

The fossils will be unveiled at the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum of Natural History in Queensland, Australia, July 3 by Anna Bligh, the Premier of Queensland. Stage 1 of the museum, a non-profit, volunteer-driven, science initiative that aims to bring Australian dinosaurs to the world, will also be opened by Ms Bligh on July 3.


Journal reference:

  1. Scott A. Hocknull, Matt A. White, Travis R. Tischler, Alex G. Cook, Naomi D. Calleja, Trish Sloan, David A. Elliott. New Mid-Cretaceous (Latest Albian) Dinosaurs from Winton, Queensland, Australia. PLoS ONE, 2009; 4 (7): e6190 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0006190

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/07/090703070846.htm

luglio 3, 2009 Posted by | - R. Dinosauri, - Sauropodi, - Teropodi, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Articolo sc. di riferimento, FREE ACCESS, Lang. - Italiano, Mesozoic, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-06-19 – Mongolia: Nuovo Psittacosauro (new Psittacosaur)

Parrot-like dinosaur found in Mongolia

A new dinosaur resembling a giant parrot has been discovered in Mongolia.

 By Chris Irvine
Published: 7:00AM BST 17 Jun 2009
New dinosaur, Psittacosaurus gobiensis: Parrot-like dinosaur found in Mongolia
A new dinosaur, named Psittacosaurus gobiensis, meaning ‘parrot dinosaur’ has been discovered in Mongolia

The creature, Psittacosaurus gobiensis whose name means “parrot lizard”, is thought to have lived about 110 million years ago.

Psittacosaurs are noted for being the most species-rich dinosaur genus with at least nine different species, including the latest found in the Gobi Desert, a famous dinosaur graveyard.

Features of the dinosaur included a near perfect skull, strong jaw muscles and a powerful biting and crushing bill – showing that it evolved structures like those in today’s parrots.

The three feet long psittacosaurs may also have had a diet dominated by nuts and seeds, owing to the presence of many large stomach stones, according to the findings published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.

Prof Paul Sereno, a Biologist from the University of Chicago, said analysis of its skull showed it chewed its food in a similar way to modern parrots.

“These and other features, along with the presence of numerous large stomach stones, suggest that psittacosaurs may have had a high-fibre, nut eating diet,” he said.

Its short snout just a third of the skull length was different to most dinosaurs, giving the skull its parrot-esque profile.

They ate nothing but plants and walked normally on two legs but could reach the ground with their three-fingered hands.

They were good runners and were extremely successful in Asia about 100 million years ago, during the Cretaceous Period.

“Psittacosaurs are all relatively small in body size, ranging from one to two metres in body length. Their geographic range is limited to central Asia, and their temporal range may be as narrow as 10-20 million years in the mid Cretaceous,” said Prof Sereno.

It is a member of the Ceratopsia group of herbivorous, beaked dinosaurs, which also include the more famous Triceratops.

source: telegraph.co.uk

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Other links: click here

giugno 19, 2009 Posted by | 1 Cretaceo, Articolo sc. di riferimento, Asia, Mesozoic, P - Preservazione eccezionale, P - Ritrovamenti fossili | , , , , | Lascia un commento

25-05-2009 – Maryland, USA: Chinese dinosaurs at Inner Harbor museum

Maryland Science Center to hatch ‘Chinasaurs’

More than 20 skeletons, other fossils will be on view at Inner Harbor museum

"Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty"

“Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty” features 20 skeletons, all of thunder lizards unearthed on the Chinese mainland. The exhibit opens May 23 and runs through Labor Day at the Maryland Science Center. Tickets are $14.95-$20.95. (Baltimore Sun photo by Kim Hairston / May 19, 2009)

 

If the Maryland Science Center has anything to say about it, Baltimoreans will soon think of China as the home of more than chopsticks, serious ping pong players and the giant panda. By the end of the summer, it should also be known as the land of Mamenchisaurus, Szechuanosaurus and Monolophosaurus, not to mention Tuojiangosaurus and Psittacosaurus.

Through Labor Day, dinosaurs from China will be invading Baltimore. And the folks at the Inner Harbor science center couldn’t be happier.

“Some of these have not been found anywhere else in the world,” says Van Reiner, the center’s president and chief executive.

“The dinosaur aficionados of this area are certainly going to see examples of dinosaurs they won’t see anywhere in the United States.”

Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty, opening Saturday in 7,000 square feet of exhibit space on the museum’s second floor, features 20 skeletons, all of thunder lizards unearthed on the Chinese mainland. Many have never before been displayed outside their native land (“The Chinese have been very protective of their finds,” Reiner says), and most are of prehistoric animals rarely mentioned in scientific textbooks.

That alone shouldn’t be surprising. The rate of dinosaur discoveries has been climbing exponentially in recent years, says Reiner. “Just when they thought they had identified all the dinosaurs, they hadn’t,” he says. “The estimate is that they’ve identified less than 10 percent.”

What might be surprising to dino-philes, as well as thrilling to even casual fans, is the range of fossils on display – from a 10-inch, astonishingly well-preserved Keichousaurus, looking like someone had carefully placed it between two sheets of rock, to a 70-foot-long skeleton of Mamenchisaurus, a creature with the longest neck of all the dinosaurs (think of a giraffe stretched out low to the ground, and you’ll get the idea).

Some of the names should ring familiar. There’s a Protoceratops, famous for being the first dinosaur whose eggs were unearthed (they actually turned out to be Oviraptor eggs, but that discovery didn’t come until nearly 70 years later). And there are several Velociraptors, the herding predators made famous in Jurassic Park.

But most of the names will prove not only unfamiliar, but tongue-twisting. Some, like Szechuanosaurus, sound like they’d be at home in a Chinese restaurant. Others, like Confuciusornis and Tuojiangosaurus (which translates to “two-river lizard”), readily betray their Asian origins.

There’s a skeleton of a Jinghanosaurus, its head peering around a wall into another display. A feathered Caudipteryx, one of those winged creatures that clearly marks the connection between dinosaurs and birds, is captured in rock as though desperately trying to flap its wings one last time. Among the oddest-looking beasts on display is Pachycephalosaur, a relatively small dinosaur whose gigantic skull resembles a football helmet. For the record, scientists don’t believe the creatures head-butted one another, but rather that they would smack each other on the sides of the heads.

And if any of those names give you trouble, try asking around. Dino-philes are usually pretty good with their nomenclature.

“Every few years, you get a new generation of dinosaur fans,” says Brenda Lewis, the science center’s acting director of exhibits. “You get these 3- or 4-year-olds who can’t talk properly, but they can pronounce the names of every dinosaur they see.”

If you go

Chinasaurs opens Saturday at the Maryland Science Center, 601 Light St. Tickets are $14.95-$20.95. Call 410-685-5225 or go to mdsci.org.

maggio 25, 2009 Posted by | - R. Dinosauri, An. Vertebrates, Mostre & Fiere, Musei, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-05-22 – Peru: Dinosaur show

Dinosaur fossils may be exhibited in northern Peru
 

  • Paleontological species to be exhibited in Trujillo.
  • Trujillo, May 20 (ANDINA).- The remains of four dinosaurs recently found in the northern Peruvian region of La Libertad may be exhibited in the First Paleontological Museum to be built in Trujillo, said the project’s promoter Klaus Honninger Mitrani, who noted that they are already coordinating with Peru’s National Institute of Culture (INC).The fossils include a glyptodont (similar to the armadillo), a megaterio (similar to the sloth bear) and a third unidentified species (with horse shape), located in San Pedro de Lloc, province of Pacasmayo.

    He said they have also found a mastodonthat in Cascas, Gran Chimu province; that is why local authorities have started the paperwork with INC in order to preserve it.

    “I believe in the next 12 months the first paleontological museum of Peru, which will be built in Trujillo, will exhibit these 4 large dinosaurs,” he told Andina.

    “The coastal area of La Libertad is very interesting because we can find a varied fauna which dates back to the ice age. That is why we found several fossilized species, but they can not be rescued without INC authorization,” he said.

    He pointed out that they signed an agreement with Universidad de Piura, which includes the donation of a paleontology laboratory to study all remains found in La Libertad and Piura.

    (END) OPC/VVS/DCR

  • source: http://www.andina.com.pe/Ingles/Noticia.aspx?id=DC4sL7YTaMU=

maggio 22, 2009 Posted by | Mostre & Fiere, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-05-03 – Dinamite per liberare Dinosauri (Dynamite to reveal Dinosaurs )

Dynamite Used To Reveal New Layer Of Dinosaur Fossils ScienceDaily

What do you do when you have a fossil quarry that has yielded some of the most important and rarest of dinosaur fossils in North America, but the fossil-bearing layer of rock is tilted at 70 degrees and there is so much rock that not even jackhammers can get you to the fossils any longer?

2009-04-30-sauropod-skull 

That was the problem facing Dinosaur National Monument at a Lower Cretaceous dinosaur quarry — the one that has produced the only complete brontosaur skulls from the last 80 million years of the Age of Dinosaurs in North America. The site is so scientifically important that excavations cannot be stopped, yet there was no way to reach the bones.

Dave Larsen, Steve Bors, and Tim George, a blasting team from Rocky Mountain National Park, rode to the rescue in mid-April. Over several days these skilled employees, using their expertise with explosives, blew away the rock covering the fossils and exposed a significant amount of the fossil-bearing layer so that excavation can begin again this year. Without their talents, scientifically important fossils would have remained locked underground in their stony mausoleum.

Fossil excavation often uses small tools, either pneumatic or manual, to carefully remove rock from delicate fossils. However, in some instances, instruments that are more powerful are needed. Although explosives might seem extreme, in the right setting and in the right hands, they are the right tool for the job — staff at Dinosaur National Monument can certainly testify to that.

source: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090429131935.htm

maggio 3, 2009 Posted by | - R. Dinosauri, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Mesozoic, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-05-02 – Estratte proteine da un dinosauro di 80 milioni di anni (Brachylophosaurus, Dinosaur, Proteins, soft tissue)

Proteins, soft tissue from 80-million-year-old dino support theory that molecules preserve over time

A North Carolina State University paleontologist has more evidence that soft tissues and original proteins can be preserved over time – even in fossilized remains – in the form of new protein sequence data from an 80 million-year-old hadrosaur, or duck-billed dinosaur.

Dr. Mary Schweitzer, associate professor of marine, earth and atmospheric sciences at NC State with a joint appointment at the N.C. Museum of Natural History, along with colleague Dr. John Asara from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Harvard Medical School, Dr. Chris Organ from Harvard University, and a team of researchers from Montana State University, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and Matrix Science Ltd. analyzed the hadrosaur samples.

The researchers’ findings appear in the May 1 edition of Science.

Schweitzer and Asara had previously used multiple methods to analyze soft tissue recovered from a 68 million-year-old Tyrannosaurus Rex. Mass spectrometry conducted on extracts of T. rex bone supported their theory that the materials were original proteins from the dinosaur.

These papers were controversial, and the team wanted to demonstrate that molecular preservation of this sort in dinosaurs was not an isolated event. Based upon other studies, they made predictions of the type of environment most likely to favor this preservation, so Schweitzer and students, working with Jack Horner’s Museum of the Rockies field crews, went looking for a dinosaur preserved under a lot of sandstone. Using specially designed field methodology, with the aim of avoiding environmental exposure until the fossil was inside the lab, they set aside the femur from a Brachylophosaurus canadensis – a hadrosaurid dinosaur–buried deeply in sandstone in the Judith River formation.

“This particular sample was chosen for study because it met our criteria for burial conditions of rapid burial in deep sandstones,” Schweitzer says. “We know the moment the fossil is removed from chemical equilibrium, any organic remains immediately become susceptible to degradation. The more quickly we can get it from the ground to a test tube, the better chance we have of recovering original tissues and molecules.”

Preliminary results seemed to confirm their methodology, as Schweitzer found evidence of the same fibrous matrix, transparent, flexible vessels and preserved microstructures she had seen in the T. rex sample in the much older hadrosaur bone. Because of the rapidity of analyses after the bones were removed, the preservation of these dinosaurian components was even better. The samples were examined microscopically via both transmitted light and electron microscopes to confirm that they were consistent in appearance with collagen. They were also tested against antibodies that are known to react with collagen and other proteins.

Next, Schweitzer sent the samples to Asara’s lab to be analyzed by a new mass spectrometer, capable of producing sequences with much greater resolution than the one used previously. Mass spectrometry identifies molecules by measuring the mass of the protein fragments, or peptides, that result from breaking apart molecules with specific enzymes. The masses are measured with very high mass accuracy, and then compared with existing databases of proteins to achieve a best fit. In this way, Asara was able to identify eight collagen peptides from the hadrosaur, then confirm the identity of the sequences by comparing them both to synthesized fragments and to modern proteins analyzed under the same conditions. Once sequence data were validated, they were evaluated by Organ who determined that, like T.rex, this dinosaur’s protein family tree is closer to that of modern birds than that of alligators.

All results were independently verified by researchers at BIDMC, Montana State University, Harvard University, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, and Matrix Science of London.

The data were consistent with that of the earlier T. rex analysis, confirming that molecular preservation in fossilized remains is not an isolated event. “We used improved methodology with better instrumentation, did more experiments and had the results verified by other independent labs,” Schweitzer says. “These data not only build upon what we got from the T. rex, they take the research even further.”

Schweitzer hopes that this finding will lead to more work by other scientists on these ancient molecules.

“I’m hoping in the future we can use this work as a jumping off point to look for other proteins that are more species-specific than collagen. It will give us much clearer insight into all sorts of evolutionary questions.”

Contact: Tracey Peake – tracey_peake@ncsu.edu – 919-515-6142 – North Carolina State University###

 source: eurekalert

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An abstract of the paper follows.

“Biomolecular Characterization and Protein Sequences of the Campanian Hadrosaur Brachylophosaurus canadensis
Authors: Mary H. Schweitzer, North Carolina State University and the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences; John M. Asara, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, et al.
Published: May 1, 2009 in Science

Abstract: Molecular preservation in non-avian dinosaurs is controversial. We present multiple lines of evidence that endogenous proteinaceous material is preserved in bone fragments and soft tissues from an 80 million year old Campanian hadrosaur, Brachylophosaurus canadensis (MOR 2598). Microstructural and immunological data are consistent with preservation of multiple bone matrix and vessel proteins, and phylogenetic analyses of Brachylophosaur collagen sequenced by mass spectrometry robustly support the bird-dinosaur clade, consistent with an endogenous source for these collagen peptides. These data complement earlier results from Tyrannosaurus rex (MOR 1125) and confirm that molecular preservation in Cretaceous dinosaurs is not a unique event.

maggio 2, 2009 Posted by | - Ornitopodi, - R. Dinosauri, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Articolo sc. di riferimento, Bl - Top posts, Mesozoic, P - Preservazione eccezionale, Paleontology / Paleontologia, X - Science | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-04-28 – Chongqing, China: “China’s Prehistoric Animal Fossil Exhibition”

Prehistoric “dinosaur”, “mammoth” fossils displayed in Chongqing 

 see the video
 
www.chinaview.cn 2009-04-27 21:49:04

BEIJING, April 27 — A herd of animals led by two “mammoths” and nine “dinosaurs” are causing a stir in the central Chinese city of Chongqing.

    “China’s Prehistoric Animal Fossil Exhibition” is underway at the city’s Liberation Monument Square. More than 30 precious artifacts are on display.

    The show features relics from well-known museums in 8 provinces and cities. Many of the fossils are considered national treasures and date between the Jurassic and the Quatenary periods 190 million years ago.Among the highlights are the bones of nine dinosaurs and a well-preserved woolly mammoth skeleton. Researchers estimate the 2-and-a-half-meter-tall mammoth is about three million years old. A nearby mechanical replica mimics the movements and sound of the real thing.This exhibition runs until May 24th.

    Xinhua News Agency correspondents reporting from Chongqing.

    (Source: XHTV)

 
Editor: Bi Mingxin

aprile 28, 2009 Posted by | - Mammiferi, - R. Dinosauri, An. Vertebrates, Asia, Mostre & Fiere, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-04-27 – Nuova teoria riguardo l`estinzione dei Dinosauri e l`impatto dell`asteroide (Dinosaur extinction and Asteroid impact: a new theory)

New Blow for Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Theory

Impact didn’t lead to mass extinction 65 million years ago, geologists find

chicxulub-crater
This artist’s rendering shows the Chicxulub crater at the time of the meteorite’s impact.
Credit and Larger Version

April 27, 2009

The enduringly popular theory that the Chicxulub crater holds the clue to the demise of the dinosaurs, along with some 65 percent of all species 65 million years ago, is challenged in a paper to be published in the Journal of the Geological Society on April 27, 2009.

The crater, discovered in 1978 in northern Yucutan and measuring about 180 kilometers (112 miles) in diameter, records a massive extra-terrestrial impact.

When spherules from the impact were found just below the Cretaceous-Tertiary (K-T) boundary, it was quickly identified as the “smoking gun” responsible for the mass extinction event that took place 65 million years ago.

It was this event which saw the demise of dinosaurs, along with countless other plant and animal species.

However, a number of scientists have since disagreed with this interpretation.

The newest research, led by Gerta Keller of Princeton University in New Jersey, and Thierry Adatte of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, uses evidence from Mexico to suggest that the Chicxulub impact predates the K-T boundary by as much as 300,000 years.

“Keller and colleagues continue to amass detailed stratigraphic information supporting new thinking about the Chicxulub impact, and the mass extinction at the end of the Cretaceous,” says H. Richard Lane, program director in the National Science Foundation (NSF)’s Division of Earth Sciences, which funded the research. “The two may not be linked after all.”

From El Penon and other localities in Mexico, says Keller, “we know that between four and nine meters of sediments were deposited at about two to three centimeters per thousand years after the impact. The mass extinction level can be seen in the sediments above this interval.”

Advocates of the Chicxulub impact theory suggest that the impact crater and the mass extinction event only appear far apart in the sedimentary record because of earthquake or tsunami disturbance that resulted from the impact of the asteroid.

“The problem with the tsunami interpretation,” says Keller, “is that this sandstone complex was not deposited over hours or days by a tsunami. Deposition occurred over a very long time period.”

The study found that the sediments separating the two events were characteristic of normal sedimentation, with burrows formed by creatures colonizing the ocean floor, erosion and transportation of sediments, and no evidence of structural disturbance.

The scientists also found evidence that the Chicxulub impact didn’t have the dramatic impact on species diversity that has been suggested.

At one site at El Penon, the researchers found 52 species present in sediments below the impact spherule layer, and counted all 52 still present in layers above the spherules.

We found that not a single species went extinct as a result of the Chicxulub impact,” says Keller.

This conclusion should not come as too great a surprise, she says. None of the other great mass extinctions are associated with an impact, and no other large craters are known to have caused a significant extinction event.

Keller suggests that the massive volcanic eruptions at the Deccan Traps in India may be responsible for the extinction, releasing huge amounts of dust and gases that could have blocked out sunlight and brought about a significant greenhouse effect.

-NSF-

Media Contacts
Cheryl Dybas, NSF (703) 292-7734 cdybas@nsf.gov

source: http://www.nsf.gov/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=114648&org=NSF&from=news

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Dinosaur Demise Came 300000 Years After Crater, Scientists Say

Bloomberg – ‎9 ore fa‎
By Chantal Britt April 27 (Bloomberg) — The demise of the dinosaurs probably occurred 300000 years after a giant meteor struck what is now Mexico,
New Blow For Dinosaur-killing Asteroid Theory Science Daily (press release)

aprile 27, 2009 Posted by | - R. Dinosauri, 1 Cretaceo, An. Vertebrates, Articolo sc. di riferimento, Mesozoic, P - Extinctions, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-04-16 – Philadelphia, USA: Hadrosaurus foulkii, America’s “first dinosaur” on display

America’s “first dinosaur” on display in Philadelphia until May 3


Hadrosaurus by Joseph Smit (1836-1929) from Nebula
to Man, 1905 England
http://www.copyrightexpired.com/earlyimage/prehistoriclifebeforekt/

Hadrosaurus foulkii doesn’t have the name recognition of a Tyrannosaurus rex, but this dinosaur made a profound impact on our view of dinosaurs today. Hadrosaurus is a hometown hero with literally deep roots in the Philadelphia area. Discovered in nearby Haddonfield New Jersey and first displayed at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, Hadrosaurus foulkii led the migration of dinosaurs out of the ground, on display in museums, and into our imaginations.

Prior to the Civil War, little was known about the dinosaurs. In the summer of 1858, Philadelphia lawyer William Parker Foulke vacationed in Haddonfield New Jersey. While searching for fossils, Foulke discovered a collection of gigantic bones.

Foulke brought these bones to the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, where they were examined by museum curator Joseph Leidy. As a professor of anatomy, Leidy recognized that the bones came from an unknown creature. At this time, the only evidence of dinosaurs came from a mismatched collection of bones and teeth.

The collection of bones discovered in Haddonfield New Jersey represented the most complete dinosaur skeleton of the time. Leidy named the newly discovered dinosaur, Hadrosaurus foulkii. The genus Hadrosaurus means “bulky lizard.”The species name foulkii was provided to honor William Parker Foulke.

10 years later, New York artist Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins assembled the bones into a mounted skeleton for the Academy. The completed skeleton debuted in November 1868, the first display of its kind. Today dinosaur skeletons are key attractions at natural history museums around the world.

The discovery of thousands of dinosaur fossils in the time since Hadrosaurus was first found on a farm in New Jersey, contributes to a more accurate representation of the dinosaur that was possible in 1868. You can view the reconstruction of Hadrosaurus foulkii on display at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia until May 3, 2009.

aprile 16, 2009 Posted by | - R. Dinosauri, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Mostre & Fiere, Musei, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

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