MarineBio Conservation SocietyEvolution News   :: ScienceDaily

How much can 252-million-year-old ecosystems tell us about modern Earth? A lot

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 14:04:24 EST ~ During the late Permian, the equator was dry and desert-like, yet surprisingly a hotspot for biodiversity, new paleontological research shows. Similarly to modern rainforests, equator ecosystems were home a unique diversity of species, including those both anciently and newly evolved. After the late Permian extinction, this diversity was decimated, and the climate change event that triggered an extinction back then is informative as we move forward with protecting our planet's species diversity. Find out more...

Revising the story of the dispersal of modern humans across Eurasia

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 14:17:24 EST ~ Most people are now familiar with the traditional 'Out of Africa' model: modern humans evolved in Africa and then dispersed across Asia and reached Australia in a single wave about 60,000 years ago. However, technological advances in DNA analysis and other fossil identification techniques, as well as an emphasis on multidisciplinary research, are revising this story. Recent discoveries show that humans left Africa multiple times prior to 60,000 years ago, and that they interbred with other hominins in many locations across Eurasia. Find out more...

It's all in the ears: Inner ears of extinct sea monsters mirror those of today's animals

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 14:16:14 EST ~ A new study has revealed that an extinct group of marine reptiles called sauropterygians evolved similar inner ear proportions to those of some modern day aquatic reptiles and mammals. Find out more...

Separated since the dinosaurs, bamboo-eating lemurs, pandas share common gut microbes

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 12:24:51 EST ~ A new study finds that bamboo lemurs, giant pandas and red pandas share 48 gut microbes in common -- despite the fact that they are separated by millions of years of evolution. Find out more...

Recently discovered fossil shows transition of a reptile from life on land to life in the sea

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 09:07:13 EST ~ Using modern research tools on a 155-million-year-old reptile fossil, scientists report they have filled in some important clues to the evolution of animals that once roamed land and transitioned to life in the water. Find out more...

Cooling climate drove evolution of Tasmanian Devil and its relatives

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 14:25:46 EST ~ A big drop in global temperatures 12-14 million years ago may explain the evolutionary success of Australia's unique marsupial carnivores, a new study has found. Find out more...

Early avian evolution: The Archaeopteryx that wasnt

Mon, 04 Dec 2017 15:06:50 EST ~ Paleontologists have corrected a case of misinterpretation: The first fossil "Archaeopteryx" to be discovered is actually a predatory dinosaur belonging to the anchiornithid family, which was previously known only from finds made in China. Find out more...

Worm genomes reveal a link between ourselves and our distant relatives

Mon, 04 Dec 2017 11:29:26 EST ~ Researchers have decoded two worm genomes and found that they have several genetic similarities with the vertebrates. Find out more...

Genes identified that distinguish mammals from other animals

Mon, 04 Dec 2017 10:53:24 EST ~ What distinguishes Homo sapiens from other living beings? And the group of mammals? What makes them different? Researchers analysed the already-sequenced genomes of 68 mammals and identified 6,000 families of genes that are only found in these animals. These are genes with no homologues outside mammals, in other words, they are not present in other hairless species. In humans, it is estimated that they represent 2.5% of the genes that code for proteins. Find out more...

Abominable Snowman? Nope: Study ties DNA samples from purported Yetis to Asian bears

Tue, 28 Nov 2017 23:04:04 EST ~ The Yeti or Abominable Snowman -- a mysterious, ape-like creature said to inhabit the high mountains of Asia -- looms large in the mythology of Nepal and Tibet. Now, a new DNA study of purported Yeti samples from museums and private collections is providing insight into the origins of this Himalayan legend. Find out more...