Paleontology

The world’s earliest known belly button was found on an early-cretaceous dinosaur

A depiction of what the Psittacosaurus and its belly button may have looked like in life

Many of our questions about how they lived and what they were like would be answered if we lived in a world where tourists could travel to a remote island resort and see living dinosaurs — or run for from them, as in Jurassic World. Unfortunately, we must rely on information gleaned from fossil remains preserved in rock tens of millions of years ago.

Paleontologists discovered a rare fossil of an ancient dog species

Rare fossil of ancient dog species

Did they walk on their toes like today’s dogs? Did they burrow in the ground or live in trees? What food did they prey on and what animals preyed upon them? How did they relate to extinct doglike species that came before them? And, potentially, is this an entirely new undiscovered species? This new fossil is providing SDNHM scientists with a few more pieces of an incomplete evolutionary puzzle.

Plankton’s endurance to prior global warming events is revealed by the discovery of “ghost” fossils.

An multinational team of experts from the Natural History Museum, UCL (University College London), the University of Florence, and the Swedish Museum of Natural History discovered a unique sort of fossilisation that had previously gone unnoticed.

The ‘ghost’ fossils are imprints of coccolithophores, which are single-celled plankton. Their discovery is altering our understanding of how climate change affects plankton in the oceans.