Showing posts with label paleontology. Show all posts
Showing posts with label paleontology. Show all posts

June 13, 2022

Oh Didn't He Ramble: The Ice Age Version

UC assistant professor of geology Joshua Miller examines a fossilized mastodon at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Miller found tooth marks on the skeleton's scapula suggesting a predator such as a dire wolf fed on the mastodon. Photo/Andrew Higley/UC Marketing + Brand

Not a Southern Rockies story, but I continue to be fascinated by the way that DNA analysis offers unimaged glimpses of the distant past:

Using isotopic analysis of the tusk of a male mastodon discovered on a peat farm in Fort Wayne, Indiana, researchers were able to track changes in landscape use between his teenage and adult years. During the mastodon’s early adolescence, he stuck to an area that included central Indiana and southwestern Ohio. After being kicked out of his maternal herd, his home range began to increase.

But then, things did not go so well for him. Read the whole thing.

June 22, 2008

Thomas Jefferson and the Giant Beasts

The entrance hall of Monticello (this photo exaggerates its size, I think) was Jefferson's museum for visitors.

Many items on display came from the Lewis & Clark expedition: There were clothing, weapons, and other artifacts from the tribes of the Northern Plains and Rocky Mountains. (These are long gone, but have been re-created by Indian artisans of today.) On the natural history side of the room are antlers, fossils, and so on.

Many Americans have heard that Jefferson instructed Lewis and Clark to be on the lookout for actual live mastodons and woolly mammoths. Failing that, they were to bring back fossils.

And here is a wonderful web site about that aspect of their expedition: Lewis & Clark's Lost World: Paleontology and the Expedition.