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Largest group of fossil humans are Neanderthals after all

The world's largest known sample of fossil humans has been classified as the species Homo heidelbergensis but in fact are early Neanderthals, according to a study by Prof Chris Stringer of the Natural History Museum.

Inner ear may hold key to ancient primate behavior

CT scans of fossilized primate skulls or skull fragments from both the Old and New Worlds may shed light on how these extinct animals moved, especially for those species without any known remains, according to an international team of researchers.

Poorly armed, but successful – The rise of the tyrants of the South

The stubby arms of Tyrannosaurus rex obviously weren’t designed for hand-to-hand combat. However, the abelisaurids of the Southern hemisphere were even less well equipped in that department–and upper limb reduction began very early in their evolution.

Woolly mammoth extinction has lessons for modern climate change

Although humans and woolly mammoths co-existed for millennia, the shaggy giants disappeared from the globe between 4,000 and 10,000 years ago, and scientists couldn't explain until recently exactly how the Flintstonian behemoths went extinct.

Did extraterrestrial impact wipe out prehistoric creatures?

An 18-member international team of researchers that includes James Kennett, professor of earth science at UC Santa Barbara, has discovered melt-glass material in a thin layer of sedimentary rock in Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Syria. According to the researchers, the material –– which dates back nearly 13,000 years –– was formed at temperatures of 1,700 to 2,200 degrees Celsius (3,100 to 3,600 degrees Fahrenheit), and is the result of a cosmic body impacting Earth.

New Paranthropus Fossils Revealed

A South African cave has revealed 14 new fossils for palaeoanthropological analysis which are discussed by Pickering et al (2012) published in the Journal of Human Evolution.

Squid ink from Jurassic period identical to modern squid ink, U.Va. study shows

An international team of researchers, including a University of Virginia professor, has found that two ink sacs from 160-million-year-old giant cephalopod fossils discovered two years ago in England contain the pigment melanin, and that it is essentially identical to the melanin found in the ink sac of a modern-day cuttlefish.

New coelacanth find rewrites history of the ancient fish

Coelacanths, an ancient group of fishes once thought to be long extinct, made headlines in 1938 when one of their modern relatives was caught off the coast of South Africa. Now coelacanths are making another splash and University of Alberta researchers are responsible.

Rocks and clocks help unravel the mysteries of ancient Earth

Dating technicals that can be used for the identification of fossils offer a glimpse into life's origins and can calibrate the Earth’s evolutionary clock.

Ancient whale skulls and directional hearing: A twisted tale

Archaeocete, an ancient whale may have used skewed skulls for navigation when in water.