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#palaeontology

The recently formally described Kholumolumo ellenbergerorum (formerly known as “Kholumolumosaurus” or “Thotobolosaurus”), a large sauropodomorph from the lower Elliot Formation (Norian) of Maphutseng, Lesotho.

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Ancient bones — how old?

Ancient bones — how old?

Radiocarbon (14C) dating was developed by Nobel-Prize winning chemist Willard Libby, and has become the predominant method to build chronologies of ancient populations and species using the Quaternary fossil record. I have just published a research paper about 14C dating of fossil bone reviewing the four standard chemical pretreatments of bone collagen to avoid sample contamination and generate…


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finished both of em :>


the second one is a little fluffier bc the feather texture is super fun to draw, i’m real happy with these!! i copied and pasted a lot of stuff from the first one (like the eyes and legs) bc i just. didn’t feel like making new ones lmao


i forgot to shade the teeth on the second one but i don’t really want to go back and fix it so they’re just gonna be some b r i g h t t e e t h


the second one has some brighter colours because they’re just more fun to do lmao, it’s not super realistic but whatever, who cares

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I would go to Jurassic park/world purely to criticize the authenticity of the dinosaurs. The inevitable dinosaur escape would not stop me. “Help! I’m being chased by Feathless, broken wristed Deinonychus that they call velociraptors” “Oh no! I’m being eaten by an oversized mosasaur that lacks a tail fluke” “God no, that man is being torn apart by Dimetrodon that was mislabeled as a dinosaur despite it being a synapsid proto-mammal that went extinct millions of years before the first dinosaur emerged”

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the birdier the better amiright


i didn’t feel like doing the other one, so this is all you get (for now idk if i want to do the other one later)


i don’t do this painting style very often, but i like how it turned out tbh, especially the feathers, which i am usually reeaaallly bad at

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Ediacaran metazoan reveals lophotrochozoan affinity and deepens root of Cambrian Explosion
https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/7/1/eabf2933
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i am very new to paleoart, this is like my third or smth dino drawing, but here’s a couple troodon doodles for pose practice, might colour em later

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everyone talks about spinosaurus vs t. rex but nobody talks about these two animals filled completely different niches and did not live in the same time or place

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Gordodon kraineri

This is the first in a bunch of palaeoartworks I’m producing for @wtf-permian, in preparation for this year’s Permian March Madness! I’ll post these as I draw them up to the start of Permian March Madness to bring y’all up to speed with some of our contestants!

First up, Gordodon! A close relative of the more famous Edaphosaurus, Gordodon is one of the earliest examples of land vertebrates beginning to specialise into different dietary niches! In the Carboniferous period, land vertebrates were mostly small omnivores, but in the Permian they started to diversify into all kinda of absolutely wild forms. 

Gordodon was once of these, with a rather buck-toothed set of jaws that might have been used for nipping off bits of vegetation! It’s also one of the earlier examples of sail-backed pelycosaurs, a group that would go on to produce Dimetrodon, which will not be making an appearance in Permian March Madness because it’d probably win on star power alone and that’s not what we’re about!

So, that’s Gordodon! Stay tuned for more, and don’t forget to follow @wtf-permian for when Permian March Madness gets going!

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Hello everyone, and welcome to an educational post about dinosaur bones!

I’ve mentioned in a post before how sometimes structures like feathers can fossilise under the right conditions. This is how we know many dinosaurs had feathers, including microraptor, archaeopteryx, and sinosauropteryx. But there are actually a few other ways to tell a dinosaur had feathers, which I hope to explain in some of my posts- one of which we will be going over today.

First of all, we’ll have to look at the skeleton of a modern bird.


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Not sure how readable the text is, but I’ve marked out a bone there called the ulna for you. Let’s get a closer look.


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Ignore the red circle, that’s not mine. The blue circle is what you’ll gotta look at- you’ll see small bumps coming off the ulna. These bumps are called quill knobs, and they’re actually where the feathers attach to the bone- signs of the existence of feathers without a shred of actual feather.

And, as you might have guessed, the ulna of modern birds are not the only ulna you can find quill knobs on.


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They’re a little harder to see- sorry, I’m trying my best to find good images, but finding good pictures is literally the hardest part of running this blog- but these are quill knobs on the ulna of a dinosaur called dakotaraptor. Dakotaraptor was a beautiful and formidable relative of velociraptor. We can infer from the quill knobs and from related fossils that it had a winglike structure on its arm, that may have functioned to keep it balanced while pounced on prey or to help it run up steep slopes by giving it some lift.

Here’s a visual. Credit to the Saurian team for this beautiful image.


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The ulna isn’t the only place we can find quill knobs, though. We can and have found them on the tail of many dinosaurs. I wish I’d have found an image, but all I found was that amber study I need to look into. Instead, here’s an image of the structure the quill knobs were there to support- the tail fan. Image credit to Ripley Cook.


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We have found quill knobs on many dinosaurs, especially raptors like dakotaraptor. We know from a combination of quill knobs, fossilised feathers, and phylogenetic bracketing (a methodology I will go over another day) that dromaeosaurs (raptors), oviraptors, therizinosaurs, troodontids, and ornithomimosaurids (dinosaurs like gallimimus) all had birdlike feathers. Compsognathids and many tyrannosaurs also had feathers, but not the birdlike kind- they had proto-feathers that more resembled fur.

I will also note that there is a debate over whether a dinosaur called concaventor has quill knobs. I will not go into that here because I don’t want to post about something so contentious that I haven’t looked into at all, but it is worth noting that the discussion exists. Go look into that if sifting through niche studies is your idea of a fun afternoon.

To close, I’d like to ask everyone who’s read any of my posts to give me feedback. Do I dumb everything down too much or is it too complex? Is my formatting no good? Please give me your thoughts, I love teaching people new things but I’m not sure if I’m any good at it.

And once again, I hope you all enjoyed being educated, and have a great afternoon!

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