Humans have been eating other humans since the beginning of time, but the motivations behind this macabre practice are complex and often unclear. Some anthropologists say prehistoric cannibals were just trying to grab a nutritious snack, but new research shows that human flesh—as tasty as it is—doesn’t pack the same…
A newly-discovered tyrannosaur that lived 75 million years ago in what is now Montana is offering insights into the facial features and uncanny senses of these fearsome prehistoric beasts. Like modern crocodiles, tyrannosaurs had faces covered with highly sensitive scales that allowed them to sense the slightest…
The common house mouse is one of the most recognizable creatures on the planet, yet we know surprisingly little about the origins of this crafty rodent. New research shows that house mice first entered human settlements far earlier than previously thought—but they had to fight a rival species to maintain their status…
Nineties kids who’ve always wanted to visit Jurassic Park to meet Jeff Goldblum—and dinosaurs—are in for a treat: A team of paleontologists from the University of Queensland in Brisbane is claiming to have found the largest-ever dinosaur footprint in a region dubbed “Australia’s Jurassic Park.” While there hasn’t been…
This may look like a photograph, but the highly realistic face staring back at you belongs to a man who died over 700 years ago. The researchers who performed this unbelievable facial reconstruction say their work is providing new details about the way ordinary people lived in medieval England.
Scientists in China have discovered male damselflies caught in the act of trying to court females inside a piece of 100-million-year old amber. It’s an extremely rare find, providing a glimpse of insectoid peacocking behavior during the age of dinosaurs.
An international team of researchers say they’ve found fossils dating back to at least 3.77 billion years ago, making them the oldest fossils ever found on our planet. The discovery, though sure to attract scrutiny, has implications for our understanding of how life got started on Earth—and how it may have emerged…
Using high-powered lasers, paleontologists have detected rare traces of soft tissue in the fossilized remains of Anchiornis—a four-winged dinosaur that lived during the late Jurassic period. The findings are offering new insights into the origin of birds and the development of flight.
The past is often portrayed as a Pandora’s Box of terrifying monsters. But while many paleontologists reject this stereotype, the scientists behind the newly-discovered marine worm Websteroprion armstrongi have decided to embrace it. It turns out this Palaeozoic prince of darkness, which roamed the seas roughly…
480 million years ago, a slug-like ancestor of modern snails and clams had hundreds of tiny teeth, a body covered in prickly spines, and a built-in helmet. Called Calvapilosa, it’s one of the earliest—and weirdest—mollusks ever discovered.
A stubbly, worm-like creature featuring as many as 30 limbs combed the seafloor during the early Cambrian period, according to new research. Its bizarre appearance and feeding behavior are unlike anything ever seen before.
Organic matter decomposes and sediment takes its place during the fossilization process, turning bones to rock. Soft tissue and proteins do not stick around. But in at least one 195-million-year-old dinosaur rib bone, some ancient bits of collagen protein found a way.
Say hello to Aethiocarenus burmanicus, an ancient insect so strange—and so god awfully ugly—its discoverers had to create an entirely new scientific classification to catalogue it.
Paleontologists working in China have uncovered the fossilized remains of a previously unknown species of ancient otter. Weighing 110 pounds, these fearsome predators were among the largest otters to have ever lived.
New research on Ötzi the Iceman, an exquisitely preserved 5,300-year-old human found in a European glacier, shows that he ate a form of dry-cured meat known as “speck”—a fatty, bacon-like snack that’s still found on charcuterie boards today.
Megalodon, the largest shark to have ever terrorized our planet’s oceans, may have gone extinct owing to its limited dietary preference for dwarf whales, according to new research.
Why did the dinosaurs go extinct? We may never be completely sure, although a giant asteroid and a bunch of enormous volcanic eruptions probably had a lot to do with it. But here’s another factor you may not have considered: too much time in the egg.
Scientists have discovered a dinosaur tail with its feathers still intact trapped inside a piece of amber. It’s absolutely incredible.
It should be obvious to everyone at this point that humans are having an enormous impact on the planet. But how much, exactly, does our collective footprint weigh? It may sound odd, but a new scientific paper is offering an answer to that very question: a staggering 30 trillion tons.
Insects aren’t the first thing that come to mind when we think of Antarctica, but as the discovery of a rare Antarctic beetle shows, this frozen continent was quite different millions of years ago.