Archive for the ‘Fossils’ Category

Monday (paleo)Organism – Indohyus

February 16, 2009


Due to the current fossil whale craze, I’ve decided to dedicate this week’s Monday Organism to another famous fossil related to whales. Well, I say “related to whales”, and this much is true for any ancient organism, but the truth is, Indohyus is really, if anything, only a sister taxon to ancient cetaceans – it’s unlikely that whales descended from Indohyus directly.



Yet Another “Mother Whale Fossil Found With Fossil Fetus” Post

February 4, 2009


Not what you might call a typical “Yet another X” line, I know. I wanted to write a post about the matter this morning, and in the interim, I found out that pretty much half of scienceblogs wrote eloquent, descriptive and fascinating posts about this.

So, just to mention this to anyone who’s not an avid scienceblogs reader – a new fossil found in Pakistan of a protocetid (ancient whale). Finding a well-preserved fossil of a transitional form is amazing already, but, and this is the kicker:

The fossil was of a female pregnant whale, and contained a fossilised fetus in it.


Monday (Paleo)Organism – Ambulocetus natans : The Walking Whale That Swims

January 12, 2009


Ambulocetus natans, a long-extinct species of cetacean from the Eocene (about 59-60 mya) and creationist nightmare extraordinaire, is one of the most fascinating fossil species known. Ambulocetus natans literally means “The walking whale that swims”, so as to provide an uppercut reply to any creationist who ignorantly inquires: “What I don’t see in the fossil record is walking whales that swim!”.