Since their discovery and subsequent naming almost 200 years ago plesiosaurs have captured the imagination of people around the world with their dramatic appearance and incredible anatomy. An extremely successful group, plesiosaurs ruled the Mesozoic oceans for millions of years, exploring a wide range of habitats and niches. Despite their iconic nature we still lack a solid understanding about many aspects of their lifestyle. At the center of this discussion is the lingering question of what exactly they used their necks for.
Firefighters battled an enormous blaze for hours at one of the world’s largest natural history museums, housed in Rio de Janeiro’s former Imperial Palace. Museum staff even ran into the building to salvage some of the millions of objects from the natural world and human civilization in Brazil. Their combined efforts were not enough and by most accounts, nearly the entire collection was lost.
In 2015, what was thought to be a dinosaur’s egg by a passerby was discovered 25 miles (40 km) south of Buenos Aires, Argentina. The meter-long “black scaly shell” was later identified as the carapace, the hard upper shell, of an extinct armored animal called a glyptodont.
The recent discovery of a dinosaur trackway site on the Isle of Skye, Scotland, provides insight into “a day in the life of a bunch of dinosaurs just loitering about, 170 million years ago” according to paleontologist Dr. Steve Brusatte of the University of Edinburgh School of Geosciences.