Jurassic period mammal teeth found; prevailing theories challenged

(Santa Barbara, Calif.) Paleontologists have discovered three tiny teeth embedded in a piece of lower jawbone from a small Jurassic period mammal on the island of Madagascar, evidence that some of our mammalian ancestors roamed the Earth at exactly the same time as the dinosaurs, according to an article in the Sept. 2 Nature.

The finding more than doubles the age of the oldest known mammal from Madagascar. Until now, terrestrial fossils were all but unknown from Madagascar for this time interval.

These small, furry creatures, the size of a house mouse, lived in Madagascar during the Middle Jurassic period -- about 165 million years ago -- scampering under the feet of allosaurs and brachiosaurs, much earlier than scientists had previously thought. The findings also show that an advanced subgroup of mammals evolved in the Southern hemisphere, challenging the prevailing notion that it came from the north.

"Smack in the middle of the dinosaurs' heyday, our ancestors were living as well -- it's just that they were small and inconspicuous," said Andre R. Wyss, associate professor of geology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and one of the authors of the article.

The National Geographic Society funded the research, a collaboration that included John J. Flynn and William F. Simpson, of the department of geology, the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago; J. Michael Parrish of the department of biology, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb; Berthe Rakotosamimanana of the department of Paleontology, University d'Antananarivo, Madagascar; and, Andre R. Wyss, of the department of geology, UC, Santa Barbara.

"The most conspicuous and hence the most famous land animals of the Mesozoic Era were of course the dinosaurs," explained Wyss. "Less widely appreciated is the fact that furry animals -- mammals -- and dinosaurs sprang on an evolutionary scene at about the same time; the t

Contact: Bill Schlotter
University of California - Santa Barbara

Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Mass extinction at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary
2. Beyond Jurassic Park: Real Science With Ancient DNA
3. Jurassic Beetle: CSIRO Entomologist Discovers Living Fossil
4. Double-segment periodicity underlies odd segment generation in centipedes
5. Human periodontal ligament stem cells isolated for the first time
6. IU and Purdue scientists to answer questions about Brood X periodical cicadas
7. First draft of periodic table of protein structures helps visualize natures universe of proteins
8. Higher fibre intake linked to later periods, scientists say
9. Warmer periods in Alaskan area not confined to modern times
10. A pill for reversible suppression of periods - a new option
11. Scientists sequence genome of major periodontal disease bacterium

Post Your Comments:

(Date:10/29/2015)... ARBOR, Mich. , Oct. 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... Eurofins Genomics for U.S. distribution of its DNA ... DNA-seq kit and Rubicon,s new ThruPLEX Plasma-seq kit. ... to enable the preparation of NGS libraries for ... plasma for diagnostic and prognostic applications in cancer ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... YORK , Oct. 27, 2015 In ... major issues of concern for various industry verticals such ... is due to the growing demand for secure & ... in various ,sectors, such as hacking of bank accounts, ... for electronic equipment such as PC,s, laptops, and smartphones ...
(Date:10/26/2015)... Calif. and LAS VEGAS ... Nok Nok Labs , an innovator in modern authentication ... , today announced the launch of its latest version ... unified platform enabling organizations to use standards-based authentication that ... Nok Nok S3 Authentication Suite is ideal for organizations ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)...  Clintrax Global, Inc., a worldwide provider of clinical research services ... that the company has set a new quarterly earnings record in ... growth posted for Q3 of 2014 to Q3 of 2015.   ... , with the establishment of an Asia-Pacific ... United Kingdom and Mexico , ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... , ... This fall, global software solutions leader SAP and AdVenture Capital brought ... pitch their BIG ideas to improve health and wellness in their schools. , Now, ... the title of SAP's Teen Innovator, an all-expenses paid trip to Super Bowl 50, ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... November 24, 2015 SHPG ) announced today ... the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual Healthcare Conference in ... 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 p.m. GMT). --> ... Officer, will participate in the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual ... on Tuesday, December 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 p.m. ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... TEL AVIV, Israel , Nov. 24, 2015  Tikcro Technologies Ltd. ... be held on December 29, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. Israel ... & Co., Electra Tower, 98 Yigal Allon Street, 36 th Floor, ... , election of Eric Paneth and Izhak Tamir ... and Rami Skaliter as external directors; , approval of an ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: