Posts

October 10, 2014

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1:30 AM | Shansiella? Pyrite Gastropod Fossil
This pyrite gastropod fossil appears to be a Shansiella. It was found in a coal mine at a depth of 60-250 meters. My identification source is Fossils of Ohio (Bulletin 70, Rodney M. Feldmann Editor, State of Ohio, Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological Survey, Columbus Ohio 1986) pages 162-173, figure 23 of specimen from Putnam Hill shale (Allegheny Group, Pennsylvanian)

October 09, 2014

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6:59 PM | What Was on the Early Mammal Menu?
Dinosaurs are great. Don’t get me wrong. But just as their bulk literally cast shade on many of …
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1:00 PM | Fall’s Red Slime
National Blog Posting Month – September 2014 – Crunch Prompt – Is there any fall flavour that turns your stomach? —— What Fall flavor makes me – er – less than happy? Well there is this one thing that always … Continue reading →
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12:46 PM | De ardillas, lirones, ratas y ratones... y castores, hámsters, gerbillos, puercoespines, etc
Un nuevo artículo de PMMV ha salido ha la luz y no quería dejar pasar la ocasión para comentar brevemente algo de su historia: Gómez Cano, A.R., Cantalapiedra, J.L., Álvarez-Sierra, M.A. & Hernández Fernández, M. 2014. A macroecological glance at the structure of late Miocene rodent assemblages from Southwest Europe. Scientific Reports, 4: 6557 (doi:10.1038/srep06557).  Como ya habréis visto en la nota de prensa oficial, se trata […]
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1:30 AM | Pyrite Bellerophon Fossil
This pyrite gastropod fossil has well defined ridges that make it easier to identify. It appears to be a Bellerophon. It was found in a coal mine at a depth of 60-250 meters. My identification source is Fossils of Ohio (Bulletin 70, Rodney M. Feldmann Editor, State of Ohio, Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological Survey, Columbus Ohio 1986) pages 162-173, figures 15-16 of

October 08, 2014

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11:00 PM | Are the days of parsimony numbered? Probably.
April Wright recently published a cool paper looking at how to bring morphological analyses of evolutionary relationships into the Bayesian realm. This is her take on it – enjoy!  Author Bio: My name is April Wright, and I’m a graduate student in David Hillis’ lab at the University of Texas at Austin. I’m largely interested […]
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7:02 PM | Fossil README: Dinosaurs and Other Mesozoic Reptiles of California
I've created a new segment on this blog: Fossil ReadMe.Ever noticed the 'readme.txt' files that always accompany newly installed software? If you read it, you'd find useful information helping you understand the software you just installed. The Fossil ReadMe segment will function like a readme.txt file – providing background information required to understand the wider world of palaeontology. It will provide short reviews and links to books and/or documentaries which are useful to […]
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5:49 PM | Potential traces everywhere
I haven’t had a lot of free time over this summer, what with moving across the country and starting a new job. Even so, I’ve been slowly working my way through an excellent book on traces and trace fossils, “Life … Continue reading →
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4:00 PM | Bowen’s Reaction Series Haikus
Sometimes, it takes a little poetry to make scientific information stick. Bowen’s Reaction Series is one of those concepts in geology that can make life a whole lot easier for students of the science. But there’s a lot there to … Continue reading →
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3:00 PM | Wordless Wednesday – Surveying the Scene
No summary available for this post.
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2:00 PM | Mmmm. Pie.
National Blog Posting Month – September 2014 – Crunch Prompt – Which pie wins your heart as the classic autumnal pie: apple or pumpkin?. —— Apple pie. Pumpkin pie. Pie. Mmmm. Pie. Alas, both types of pie are potentially booby-trapped. … Continue reading →
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1:42 PM | Tachiraptor admirabilis and the Early Dispersal of Dinosaurs after the end-Triassic Extinction
Langer, M. C., Rincón, A. D., Ramezani, J., Solórzano, A., and O. W. M. Rauhut. 2014. New dinosaur (Theropoda, stem-Averostra) from the earliest Jurassic of the La Quinta Formation,Venezuelan Andes. Royal Society Open Science 1: 140184.http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsos.140184Abstract - Dinosaur skeletal remains are almost unknown from northern South America. One of the few exceptions comes from a small outcrop in the northernmost extension of the Andes, along […]
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2:55 AM | Tachiraptor admirabilis, a New Theropod Dinosaur from the Earliest Jurassic of Venezuela
     MAURÍLIO OLIVEIRAThe paper will be out on October 8th, but Science's website already has a news article up about the find. It is from the same locality as the early ornithischian dinosaur Laquintasaura, which was described earlier this year.
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1:30 AM | Iereopsis Sponge Fossil with Bioclaustration?
The picture displayed is of an Iereopsis polystoma sponge fossil at the Museo di Paleontologia at Sapienza University of Rome Italy. Creatures like this existed at the time of the Upper Cretaceous Period (Campanian). The fossil was found in Misburg, Hannover, Germany. There appears to be a trace fossil on this sponge that I have seen something like before. We find these marks sometimes on
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1:06 AM | Challenge Accepted – Save Happiness
Two weeks ago I found a bunch of magnetic words and made some goofy poems and sayings in one of the classrooms. I wrote about them here. I left the magnets on the board, and invited students to write their … Continue reading →

October 07, 2014

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11:00 PM | Scrappy, Bloodthirsty Dino Found in Venezuela
Venezuela now has its first meat-loving dinosaur, a scrappy carnivore known as Thief of Tachira.
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10:36 PM | Evolution in the Slow Lane
One late spring weekend a few years back, my wife and I drove out to Delaware to see …
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4:00 PM | The Damned Dromaeosaurs of Stock Image Island
If you have not read Witton, Naish, and Conway's State of the Palaeoart, make a point of doing so. The article is the culmination of a discussion that seems to have begun in earnest back in the spring of 2011, when the Dinosaur Mailing List played host to complaints from Gregory S. Paul about other artists copying his famous mid-stride skeletal pose. Though GSP kicked off a righteous ruckus with his assertion that he owned that pose, the argument was also a chance for people to air their […]
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2:00 PM | Omnom Autumn
National Blog Posting Month – September 2014 – Crunch Prompt – Tell us about your favourite autumnal edible treat. —— The thing about autumn is that is seems to be a time of great eating. It makes good sense, I … Continue reading →
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1:30 AM | Pyrite Trepospira Gastropod Fossil
This gastropod fossil is interesting as it pyrite embedded in a dark shale. It appears to be a Trepospira. It was found in a coal mine at a depth of 60-250 meters. My identification source is Fossils of Ohio (Bulletin 70, Rodney M. Feldmann Editor, State of Ohio, Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological Survey, Columbus Ohio 1986) pages 162-173, figures 13-14 of specimen from

October 06, 2014

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8:46 PM | Solite Excavation: Day 9
We are at a point with the excavation where we are making steady progress in collecting the insect bed each week. With a crew of 2 volunteers and 5 VMNH staff, we collected another ~5 cubic feet of insect bed and made good progress … Continue reading →
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7:29 PM | Iowa’s Enigmatic “Horse Collars”
I love museum collections. They are truly wondrous places that document the curiosities of nature as well as …
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2:00 PM | Pumpkin Booby-traps!
National Blog Posting Month – September 2014 – Crunch Prompt – Pumpkin spiced flavoured everything: can’t get enough OR enough already! —— Oh pumpkin spice, how I love thee! Really. I simply adore pumpkin spice. So you’d think this time … Continue reading →
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3:02 AM | Stink Bug – Chapter 38
I sat facing the door, expecting it to open again at any moment. The grey had left rather suddenly. Maybe it would be back. V’x was still cooing quietly. I twisted to see her sitting outside of the cage. W’x’tl … Continue reading →
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2:36 AM | Coal Mine Cephalopod Fossil
This fossil is somewhat rare because it was found at a depth of 60-250 meters underground. The fossil was situated above the coal seam so it might be from the Pennsylvanian Period (late Carboniferous). It was found in Webster County Kentucky USA. The mines there are part of the Eastern Interior Basin. The formations found there are Sturgis, Carbondale, and Tradewater. The limestone layers are 
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1:05 AM | Random Scene Sunday
“Seth!” Rott’s voice echoed through the dark cavern. “Seth! Are you all right?” Daggers of pain swept through his body as Seth tried to draw a breath. He inhaled dust and coughed. The pain was sharp. All he managed was … Continue reading →

October 05, 2014

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2:19 PM | Here’s that sheep-skull multiview you ordered
Remember I picked up those three sheep skulls (and some other bones, including a complete neck) from a shallow pit in a field near where we live? Here is first first of the skulls, cleaned up and photographed in orthogonal views. It’s interesting to compare it to the pig skull from way back: Sheep and […]
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1:30 AM | Cnemidium Sponge Fossil
The image shown is of a Cnemidium pertuscum Reuss sponge fossil at the Museo di Paleontologia at Sapienza University of Rome Italy. Animals like this existed at the time of the Upper Cretaceous Period (Cenomanian). The fossil was found in Bilin, Bohemia, Czech Republic. Image taken in June 2014.

October 04, 2014

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1:30 AM | Scytalia laevis Fossil
The picture shown is of a Scytalia laevis sponge fossil at the Museo di Paleontologia at Sapienza University of Rome Italy. Creatures like this existed at the time of the Upper Cretaceous Period (Campanian). The fossil was found in Nettlingen, Hannover, Germany. Image taken in June 2014. Another German specimen can be seen at this fossil web site: http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/

October 03, 2014

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7:03 PM | Fossil Friday: SOVA Career Expo – Youth Expo
During the last two days, the Ray and I represented the VMNH at the SOVA Career Expo for Youth in Chatham, VA. The Career Expo was an opportunity for us to share with middle schoolers and high schoolers the variety of work … Continue reading →
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