PaleoNews #9

Hey guys, welcome to PaleoNews #9! 


The first species of Metoposaurus found in the Iberian Peninsula has been described. At 6 feet long, this animal was one of the main aquatic predators in its ecosystem. This new species is known from a bonebed of animals found in a lacustrine deposit in Portugal which date to around 230 million years ago. Metoposaurus was a highly derived temnospondyl. Called “toilet head” by some in the media, the use of the flat skull of the animal is still unknown. I suspect it acted like a spring trap, snapping shut when a prey item crossed paths with this predator.

Another strange stem-arthropod has been discovered. Around 508 million years ago, Yawunik kootenayi swam through the primordial seas of the Cambrian. Part of the Burgess Shale fauna, Yawunik shares many features with modern arthropods, including long appendages jutting out from the front of the animal that are similar to antennae. These appendages sported rows of “teeth” which were used to hunt prey items. In fact, the frontal appendages of this animal are some of the most complex known among all arthropods.


At DINOSOURS!, Ben starts a new series on the AMNH fossil halls. You can find part 1 here and part 2 here. Theropod Thursday 53 has been posted on dinosaurpalaeo! Join Heinrich as he explores the world of snow-white birds in Theropod Thursday 53: Snow White.  The Royal Tyrell Museum takes us into the lives of the many museum staff who help excavate, prepare, and mount their fossils. It’s really quite interesting! I suggest that you check the post out here.

Mammoth is Mopey needs your help to be published! David Orr of LITC and his wife are trying to publish their book Mammoth is Mopey! The book will help educate both child and adult as they read through an alphabet of prehistoric animals while also getting little factoids on various prehistoric animals. It also features animals littlle known to the public, such as Opabinia and Kelenken. To see what you can do to help get this book published, you can visit David Orr’s blog at and the book’s Indiegogo page here.


This week we have Jason Abdale’s Camarasaurus :


Jason is an amazing artist as well as an accomplished academic! His art has been featured in various media outlets including Prehistoric Times. You can find him at his blog Thanks again to Jason for allowing me to use his artwork!

I hope you all enjoyed PaleoNews #9! Thanks for reading! 

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