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Fossil Friday Roundup: January 13, 2017

Featured Image: The hyolith “Haplophrentis” could extend the tentacles of its feeding organ, lophophore, from between its shells. The paired spines, or helens, rotated downwards to prop the animal up off the ocean floor (Illustration by Danielle Dufault/ROM). For more information, see first item under News.

Papers (All Open Access):

  • The Lower Cretaceous in East-Central Utah—The Cedar Mountain Formation and its Bounding Strata (Utah Geological Association Publications)
  • Rise of the erg—paleontology and paleoenvironments of the Triassic-Jurassic transition in northeastern Utah (Utah Geological Association Publications)
  • Major bonebeds in mudrocks of the Morrison Formation (Upper Jurassic), northern Colorado Plateau of Utah and Colorado (Utah Geological Association Publications)
  • Tracking dinosaurs in BLM canyon country, Utah (Utah Geological Association Publications)
  • Marine origin of retroviruses in the early Palaeozoic Era (Nature Communications)
  • Rates of morphological evolution in Captorhinidae: An adaptive radiation of Permian herbivores (PeerJ Preprints)
  • Aggregations and parental care in the Early Triassic basal cynodonts Galesaurus planiceps and Thrinaxodon liorhinus (PeerJ)
  • A molecular portrait of maternal sepsis from Byzantine Troy (eLife)
  • Bone Microvasculature Tracks Red Blood Cell Size Diminution in Triassic Mammal and Dinosaur Forerunners (Current Biology – OA for 50 days)
  • Digestive and appendicular soft-parts, with behavioural implications, in a large Ordovician trilobite from the Fezouata Lagerstätte, Morocco (Nature)
  • Earliest Human Presence in North America Dated to the Last Glacial Maximum: New Radiocarbon Dates from Bluefish Caves, Canada (PLOS ONE)
  • Why are we not evaluating multiple competing hypotheses in ecology and evolution? (RSOS)
  • Not Normal: the uncertainties of scientific measurements (RSOS)
  • Transparency and openness in science (RSOS)
  • What North America’s skeleton crew of megafauna tells us about community disassembly (ProcB)
  • Phalangeal joints kinematics during ostrich (Struthio camelus) locomotion (PeerJ)
  • The extreme insular adaptation of Garganornis ballmanni Meijer, 2014: a giant Anseriformes of the Neogene of the Mediterranean Basin (RSOS)
  • Hygroscopic motions of fossil conifer cones (Nature)
  • Pattern, process, inference and prediction in extinction biology (Biology Letters)
  • Biting Midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) from Cambay Amber Indicate that the Eocene Fauna of the Indian Subcontinent Was Not Isolated (PLOS ONE)
  • Evidence of a Vocalic Proto-System in the Baboon (Papio papio) Suggests Pre-Hominin Speech Precursors (PLOS ONE)


  • University of Toronto undergrad leads team of paleontologists, classifying mysterious ancient cone-shaped sea creatures (Link)
  • What teeth reveal about the lives of modern humans (Link)
  • Great Barrier Reef almost drowned (Link)
  • We Got The Mesentery News All Wrong (Link)
  • Mongolia seeks to crush fossil black market (Link)
  • New paleontology collections manager at Sternberg Museum (Link)
  • Uncovering a Mystery One Layer at a Time (Link)
  • House GOP rules change will make it easier to sell off federal land (Link)
  • University of Kansas Grant will train future paleontologists, shed light on early Cenozoic mammals (Link)
  • Palaeontologists reveal 350m-year-old tropical Scotland bursting with life (Link)

Community Events and Society Updates:

  • DinoFest 2017: January 28-29, Salt Lake City, Utah (Link)
  • Holtz on “Paranormal Geology” at NSF HQ: January 14 (Link)

Around the Blogosphere:

Non-Paleo Blogs of Interest:

  • Why researchers should resolve to engage in 2017 (Nature)
  • How to approach a PI when you have misgivings about data (NatureJobs)
  • The Importance of Storytelling in Science (PLOS Ecology Community)

Do you have some news, a blog, or something just plain cool you want to share with the PLOS Paleo Community? Email it to us at, tweet it to us at @PLOSPaleo, or message us on Facebook.

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