Dinosaur

Before dinosaurs could fly, some had flight-ready brains

Publication: NBC News   Date: July 31, 2013   View Article

Dinosaurs evolved the brain power necessary for flight well before they took to the air as birds, according to a new study. The finding suggests that Archaeopteryx, often considered a transitional species between dinosaurs and living birds, wasn’t all that special.

“The same neurological capacity that Archaeopteryx has is also in these other non-avian dinosaurs,” Amy Balanoff, a paleontologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York and the study’s lead author, told NBC News.

New Dinosaur: Fossil Fingers Solve Bird Wing Mystery?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: June 17, 2009   View Article

The fossil hand of a long-necked, ostrich-like dinosaur recently found in China may help solve the mystery of how bird wings evolved from dinosaur limbs, according to a new study.

The ancient digits belonged to a 159-million-year-old theropod dinosaur dubbed Limusaurus inextricabilis. Theropods are two-legged dinos thought to have given rise to modern birds.

Seven icons of science at the Smithsonian

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: May 22, 2009   View Article

In “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian,” Ben Stiller returns to the movie screen as security guard Larry Daley for another adventure among animated artifacts and historical figures. The museum and research complex houses more than 136 million objects, works of art and specimens. Check out seven iconic items from the museum’s science collections, including a few that come to life under Daley’s watch.

Oldest Dinosaur Protein Found – Blood Vessels, More

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: May 1, 2009   View Article

The fossilized leg of an 80-million-year-old duck-billed dinosaur has yielded the oldest known proteins preserved in soft tissue—including blood vessels and other connective tissue as well as perhaps blood cell proteins—a new study says.

The research was led by the team behind the controversial 2007 discovery of protein from similar soft tissues in 68-million-year-old Tyrannosaurus rex bones.

“It was not a one-hit wonder,” said John Asara of Harvard Medical School, who led the protein-sequence analysis.

Eight surprising fossil finds

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: March 16, 2009   View Article

Fossils help scientists peel back the layers of time to reveal stories of life from eras long past. Sometimes the story goes in an unforeseen direction; other fossils have a “wow” factor simply because they were discovered at all. Check out eight surprising fossil finds.

9 links in the dinosaur-to-bird transition

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: February 3, 2009   View Article

Scientists have plenty of strong evidence that birds evolved from dinos. Check out nine links in the transition from dinosaurs to birds.

Dinosaur Slime Sparks Debate Over Soft-Tissue Finds

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 30, 2008   View Article

Soft tissue recently found in 68-million-year-old Tyrannosaurus rex bones is actually modern-era bacterial slime, scientists say, challenging what some call one of the most remarkable paleontology findings of the 21st century.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach