Fossil Friday Roundup: December 8, 2017

Featured Image: SEM Examples of pollen grains in Myrtales. From Kriebal et al (2017).

Read our Latest Newsletter!

Papers (All Open Access):

  • The reproducibility of research and the misinterpretation of p-values (RSOS)
  • Soft-Bodied Fossils Are Not Simply Rotten Carcasses – Toward a Holistic Understanding of Exceptional Fossil Preservation (BioEssays)
  • A continuous morphological approach to study the evolution of pollen in a phylogenetic context: An example with the order Myrtales (PLOS ONE)
  • Changes of wood anatomical characters of selected species of Araucaria– during artificial charring – implications for palaeontology (Acta Botanica Brasilica)
  • A reconstruction of sexual modes throughout animal evolution (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Unanticipated discovery of two rare gastropod molluscs from recently located hydrothermally influenced areas in the Okinawa Trough (PeerJ)
  • Rates of morphological evolution, asymmetry and morphological integration of shell shape in scallops (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Evidence for Palaeozoic orthoconic cephalopods with bimineralic shells (Palaeontology)
  • Revision of Dromilites bucklandii (Crustacea, Decapoda, Brachyura): Type material revealing its real identity, a junior synonym, and a new species (PalaeoE)
  • The genus Gennadas (Benthesicymidae: Decapoda): morphology of copulatory characters, phylogeny and coevolution of genital structures (RSOS)
  • The role of isolation on contrasting phylogeographic patterns in two cave crustaceans (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Who’s that girl? A singular Tropiduchidae planthopper from the Eocene Baltic amber (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha) (PalaeoE)
  • Changes of arthropod diversity across an altitudinal ecoregional zonation in Northwestern Argentina (PeerJ)
  • Structure and function of a compound eye, more than half a billion years old (PNAS)
  • Ecomorphological inferences in early vertebrates: reconstructing Dunkleosteus terrelli (Arthrodira, Placodermi) caudal fin from palaeoecological data (PeerJ)
  • Regional Fish-Based Biostratigraphy of the Late Neogene and Pleistocene of Southeastern Europe (Vestnik zoologii)
  • Testing species limits of New Zealand’s leiopelmatid frogs through morphometric analyses (Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society)
  • The tetrapod fauna of the upper Permian Naobaogou Formation of China: 1. Shiguaignathus wangi gen. et sp. nov., the first akidnognathid therocephalian from China (PeerJ)
  • Huge Miocene Crocodilians From Western Europe: Predation, Comparisons with the “False Gharial” and Size (Link)
  • New anatomical information of the wukongopterid Kunpengopterus sinensis Wang et al., 2010 based on a new specimen (PeerJ)
  • Spinosaurid Dinosaurs from the Early Cretaceous of North Africa and Europe: Fossil Record, Biogeography and Extinction (Link)
  • Re-evaluation of the Haarlem Archaeopteryx and the radiation of maniraptoran theropod dinosaurs (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Ice age unfrozen: severe effect of the last interglacial, not glacial, climate change on East Asian avifauna (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Neither slim nor fat: estimating the mass of the dodo (Raphus cucullatus, Aves, Columbiformes) based on the largest sample of dodo bones to date (PeerJ)
  • Late Campanian theropod trackways from Porvenir de Jalpa, Coahuila, Mexico (Palaeovertebrata)
  • A redescription of the ichnospecies Koreanaornis anhuiensis (Aves) from the Lower Cretaceous Qiuzhuang Formation at Mingguang city, Anhui Province, China (Journal of Palaeogeography)
  • Total evidence phylogeny and evolutionary timescale for Australian faunivorous marsupials (Dasyuromorphia) (BMC Evolutionary Biology)
  • Resolving kangaroo phylogeny and overcoming retrotransposon ascertainment bias (Scientific Reports)
  • A new Oligo–Miocene marsupial lion from Australia and revision of the family Thylacoleonidae (Journal of Systematic Paleontology)
  • Koristocetus pescei gen. et sp. nov., a diminutive sperm whale (Cetacea: Odontoceti: Kogiidae) from the late Miocene of Peru (Fossil Record)
  • Mitogenome evolution in the last surviving woolly mammoth population reveals neutral and functional consequences of small population size (Evolution Letters)
  • Fossil findings from the Sıcak Çermik fissure ridge-type travertines and possible hominid tracks, Sivas, Central Turkey (Geodinamica Acta)


  • Paleontology of the Bears Ears National Monument: history of exploration and designation of the monument (PeerJ)
  • Early Bursts of Disparity and the Reorganization of Character Integration (PaleorXiv)
  • Diverse early Paleocene megaflora from the Ojo Alamo Sandstone, San Juan Basin, New Mexico, USA (PaleorXiv)
  • How has our knowledge of dinosaur diversity through geologic time changed through research history? (PaleorXiv)

Community Events, Society Updates, and Resources:

  • The Science Ambassador Scholarship for female undergraduate and high school seniors, Deadline December 11, 2017 (Link)
  • Apply Now For The 2018 Emerging Public Policy Leadership Award, Deadline Jan. 18, 2018 (Paleontological Society)
  • Western Association of Vertebrate Paleontologists Annual Meeting, St. George, Utah, Feb. 16–18, 2018, Abstract Deadline January 12, 2018 (Link)
  • 2018 AIBS Congressional Visits Day In Washington, DC, April 17-18, 2018 (Paleontological Society)
  • Trekking Across the GOBE: From the Cambrian through the Katian, IGCP 653 Annual Meeting, June 3-7, 2018, Athens, Ohio, USA (Link)
  • North American Paleontological Convention June 23–27 2019 (Link)

News and Views:

Animals and Anatomy:

  • Top 10 Open Access Fossil Taxa of 2017: Websteroprion armstrongi (PLOS Paleo)
  • The Tropidurine Treerunners (Tetrapod Zoology)
  • Hundreds of pterosaur eggs help reveal the early life of flying reptiles (The Conversation)
  • Pterosaur Eggs and Nests (Dr. Neurosaurus)
  • Top 10 Open Access Fossil Taxa of 2017: Shringasaurus indicus (PLOS Paleo)
  • The News in Hadrosaur Dietary Paleobiology (Equatorial Minnesota)
  • Synchrotron sheds light on the amphibious lifestyle of a new raptorial dinosaur (Link)
  • Halszkaraptor and what it means for Dromaeosaurids (Notions of a Most Peculiar Dinosaur Nerd)
  • Dinosaur Eggs under Stress (Laelaps)
  • Fossil Friday – deer antler (Valley of the Mastodon)
  • Separated Since the Dinosaurs, Bamboo-Eating Lemurs, Pandas Share Common Gut Microbes (Link)
  • Counting the Clouded Leopards (Synapsida)
  • New details on the lives and deaths of frozen Ice Age kittens (Earth Touch News)
  • Little Foot takes a bow (Link)
  • Revising the story of the dispersal of modern humans across Eurasia (Link)

Museums, Methods, and Musings:

Featured Folks and Fieldwork:

Art, books, culture, and fun:

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.

Published by Sarah Z. Gibson

Dr. Sarah Z. Gibson is a paleontologist and science communicator based in Minnesota. Her research focuses on the evolutionary history of ray-finned fishes from the Early Mesozoic.

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