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Lacustrine ecosystems needed 10 million years to recover after end-permian mass extinction

The end-Permian mass extinction (EPME), approximately 252 million years ago (Ma), caused a serious marine and terrestrial ecosystem crisis, and about 75% of terrestrial biological species disappeared. How long did it take for terrestrial ecosystems to recover?

Tooth be told: Earless seals existed in ancient Australia

A fossilised seal tooth found on a Victorian beach could hold the key to uncovering the history and geography of earless seals that graced Australia's shores three million years ago.

Six million-year-old bird skeleton points to arid past of Tibetan plateau

Researchers from the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology (IVPP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have found a new species of sandgrouse in six to nine million-year-old rocks in Gansu Province in western China.

Fourth new pterosaur discovery in matter of weeks

Hot on the heels of a recent paper discovering three new species of pterosaur, University of Portsmouth palaeobiologists have identified another new species - the first of its kind to be found on African soil.

Ancient aquatic crocs evolved, enlarged to avoid freezing

Taking the evolutionary plunge into water and abandoning land for good, as some crocodilian ancestors did nearly 200 million years ago, is often framed as choosing freedom: from gravity, from territorial boundaries, from dietary constraints.

Smallest ever dinosaur skull found in 3cm piece of amber

The head of a flying dinosaur that is hardly bigger than a bee hummingbird has been discovered in 99-million-year-old amber.

In Earth’s largest extinction, land die-offs began long before ocean turnover

The mass extinction at the end of the Permian Period 252 million years ago — one of the great turnovers of life on Earth — appears to have played out differently and at different times on land and in the sea, according to newly redated fossils beds from South Africa and Australia.

Fossil finds give clues about flying reptiles in the Sahara 100 million years ago

Three new species of toothed pterosaurs -- flying reptiles of the Cretaceous period, some 100 million years ago -- have been identified in Africa by an international team of scientists led by Baylor University.

Small horses got smaller, big tapirs got bigger 47 million years ago

The former coalfield of Geiseltal in eastern Germany has yielded large numbers of exceptionally preserved fossil animals, giving palaeontologists a unique window into the evolution of mammals 47 million years ago.