Posts tagged archosaur
Posts tagged archosaur
Flock of Ancient ‘Butterfly-Headed’ Flying Reptiles Discovered
by Tia Ghose
An ancient flying reptile with a bizarre, butterflylike head has been unearthed in Brazil.
The new-found pterosaur species, Caiuajara dobruskii, lived about 80 million years ago in an ancient desert oasis. The beast sported a strange bony crest on its head that looked like the wings of a butterfly, and had the wingspan needed to take flight at a very young age.
Hundreds of fossils from the reptile were unearthed in a single bone bed, providing the strongest evidence yet that the flying reptiles were social animals, said study co-author Alexander Kellner, a paleontologist at the Museu Nacional/Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro in Brazil…
(read more: Live Science)
illustration by Maurilio Oliveira/Museu Nacional-UFR; photos: Manzig et al, PLOS ONE 2014
Amazingly Vivid Dino Illustrations Reveal a Brutal Prehistoric World
Over its lifetime, Earth has hosted countless species. But some of those species, like the dinosaurs, have managed to claw their way into a special place in our imaginations. Now, a new book illustrates the dinosaurs — and many of the beasts of millennia ago — in beautiful, spectacular and vicious style.
In one illustration, tiny Utahraptors tear at the flesh of a much larger creature. Another shows a rather unlikely but fanciful encounter between giant megalodon and funny-looking platybelodon. A more serene image depicts a well-camouflaged little dinosaur sleeping beneath a tree in a lush, green forest.
The Paleoart of Julius Csotonyi, available on May 20, is a collection of artwork by Julius Csotonyi, an award-winning illustrator whose work lives in museums and in science papers. Csotonyi, who holds a PhD in microbiology, works frequently with paleontologists who need help bringing their fossil finds to life. Sometimes, though, he draws whatever comes to mind. According to Csotonyi’s parents, his first illustration, at age 3, was of a dinosaur. “It appears to have been intended to be a rooster,” Csotonyi says in the book.
Julius Csotonyi is one of my favorite paleo artists, and even his digital composite works still incorporate some of the sharpest, most detailed digital painting I’ve ever seen. His borderline photorealistic approach is just…wow.
Palaeoartworks: a palaeoart gallery at Lyme Regis, April 7th - May 4th
Mark Witton: “So, what can you expect from the gallery? Hopefully, there’s a wide enough range of restorations to keep most tastes happy: dinosaurs, pterosaurs, Crocodyliformes, invertebrates, marine reptiles, even some fish. These are organised into are three collections. The first is dedicated to palaeoart of the Wealden Supergroup, a sequence of Lower Cretaceous sediments found throughout south-east England with an intensely studied palaeobiota and palaeoenvironment. Regular readers will know that I’ve been publishing a lot of Wealden artwork recently - enough, it seems, to fill the wall of a gallery - and my favourites are now on display." More info
This is part of the Lyme Regis Fossil Festival 2-4 May, 2014
Meet Dimorphodon, the toothy pterosaur.
Discovered in the 1820s on the coast of southern England, by a young woman, Mary Anning, famed for her fossil-finding abilities, Dimorphodon earned its names for its distinctive dentition. Dimorphodon, the genus name, means “two-formed tooth” and refers to the animal’s two types of teeth: Long, curved fangs that jut from the front of the jaws, and a row of short pointed teeth that lies behind.
Some dromaeosaurs I did for my exam assignment, in which I wrote a 30 page paper on the origins of birds.
Mark Witton’s Pterosaurs: beautiful, lavish, scholarly and comprehensive
by Darren Naish
I assume you’re here for the Tetrapod Zoology. If so, you’ll have been excited and intrigued by one of 2013’s best tetrapod-themed books: Mark Witton’s Pterosaurs, an enormous, lavishly illustrated encyclopedia of all things pterosaur. Scholarly but highly readable, fully referenced throughout, and featuring hundreds of excellent photos, diagrams and beautiful, colour life restorations, this volume is a must-own, whatever your interest in pterosaurs. And, let’s face it, there aren’t that many books devoted to pterosaurs to begin with, so another one on the market can only be a good thing.
Herein, please find my assorted thoughts on this most excellent book. First of all, though, some disclosure: as readers and followers will likely already know, I’m personal friends with Mark and have co-authored several studies with him. You might therefore conclude that the following review is not impartial; nevertheless, let’s see what happens. For the purposes of convention, I’m going to refer to Mark as ‘Witton’ throughout this review…
(read more: Tetrapod Zoology - Scientific American)
illustrations by Mark Witton
In the Late Triassic, William Sillin, Dinosaur State Park, 1988/1991
There are eras when life clambers. Meteors fall, sea-levels drop, volcanos poison the sky; biospheres collapse, dynasties end, whole worlds are extinguished. Then life must crawl from the debris to rebuild, to find new forms for old niches.
The Great Dying was over. Siberia’s geology relaxed; no more did oceans of molten basalt exhale acid aerosols and dust, or blaze through coal beds, transforming them into hurricanes of sun-blocking ash. Now the sky was clean, the air was pure, the crushing heat subsided. Green spread again, and things crept within it.
But recovery is slow—it’s not rebirth, but relearning. This is how you take a step. This is how you run. This is how you feed and breed, spread seeds and spores, gallop in herds, swarm in shoals, fly, bloom, and thrive. This is fear and this is affection. This is lust and this is greed. This is the sound of aetosaurs huffing, of fabrosaurs chirping, of leaves brushing against a phytosaur’s hide. This is how the sand feels on your toes as you sprint across the Triassic riverbank in the middle of a fifty million-year-long August, breakfast pinched between your teeth, and your tiny heart patting between each step. This is how life emerges from the darkness and makes for itself a new dawn.
Geosternbergia is an extinct genus of Pterosaur which lived during the Late Cretaceous. Apparently, this species exhibited a characteristic known as sexual dimorphism, which is a difference in phenotype between males and females of a single species.
(Photo credit 1: Tuomas Koivurinne, 2)
Not In Kansas Anymore
pastel on paper, 32” x 40”, 1993, © Ray Troll