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Lystrosaurus BW

Lystrosaurus is an extinct genus of dicynodont therapsid that lived during the Late Permian and Early Triassic periods, around 250 million years ago in what is now Antarctica, India and South Africa. At present 4 to 6 species are recognized, although from the 1930s to 1970s the number of species was thought to be much higher. Lystrosaurus had only two teeth, as with all other dicynodonts, as well as a pair of tusk-like canines. Lystrosaurus is thought to have had a horny beak that was used for biting off pieces of vegetation. Lystrosaurus was a heavily-built, herbivorous animal, approximately the size of a pig. The structure of its shoulders and hip joints suggest that Lystrosaurus moved with a semi-sprawling gait. Lystrosaurus was by far the most common terrestrial vertebrate of the Early Triassic, accounting for as many as 95% of the total individuals in some fossil beds. It has often been suggested that it had anatomical features that enabled it to adapt better than most animals to the atmospheric conditions that were created by the Permian–Triassic extinction event and which persisted through the Early Triassic — low concentrations of oxygen and high concentrations of carbon dioxide. However recent research suggests that these features were no more pronounced in Lystrosaurus than in genera that perished in the extinction or genera that survived but were much less abundant than Lystrosaurus. (Read more...)


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Paul Sereno2

Paul Sereno is an American paleontologist who is the discoverer of several new dinosaur species on several continents. He has conducted excavations at sites as varied as Inner Mongolia, Argentina, Morocco and Niger. He is a professor at the University of Chicago and a National Geographic "explorer-in-residence." Sereno's most widely publicized discovery is that of a nearly complete specimen of Sarcosuchus imperator (popularly known as SuperCroc) at Gadoufaoua in the Tenere desert of Niger. Other major discoveries include Eoraptor - the oldest known dinosaur fossil, Jobaria, the first good skull of Carcharodontosaurus iguidensis, Afrovenator, Suchomimus and the African pterosaur. (Read more...)

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After his dismissal from KSAC (Kansas State University) in 1874, Benjamin Franklin Mudge wrote to Othniel Charles Marsh:

"When you were here, you stated that you should like to employ one or more young men to collect fossils in western Kansas. As perhaps you may have learned, I have been summarily discharged (with two other professors) from this college. This has been done by an incompetent, conceited clergyman, who is acting as president."
Benjamin Franklin Mudge, February 3, 1874 letter in the Yale Archives


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Mosasaur123

Mounted skeleton of Platecarpus planifrons. Platecarpus (meaning "Flat wrist") is an extinct genus of aquatic lizard belonging to the mosasaur family, living around 75 million years ago during the end of the Cretaceous period. Fossils have been found in Belgium and the United States.

Like other mosasaurs, Platecarpus had a long, laterally flattened tail, steering flippers, and deadly, tooth-lined jaws. It was around 4.3 meters (14 ft) long, with half of that length being taken up by its sinuous tail. It probably swam in a snake-like fashion. Platecarpus probably fed on fish, squid, and ammonites. They were medium sized animals, reaching about 7 meters (23 ft) in length. The platecarpine mosasaurs had evolved into the very specialized plioplatecarpine group by the end of the Cretaceous.

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