Digitizing the vast 'dark data' in museum fossil collections

The great museums of the world harbor a secret: They're home to millions upon millions of natural history specimens that almost never see the light of day. They lie hidden from public view, typically housed behind or above ...

What makes some species more likely to go extinct?

Though they say "'tis impossible to be sure of anything but death and taxes," a bit of financial chicanery may get you out of paying the taxman. But no amount of trickery will stop the inevitability of death. Death is the ...

Old species learn new tricks... very slowly

A quick look at the fossil record shows that no species lasts forever. On average, most species exist for around a million years, although some species persist for much longer. A new study published in Scientific Reports ...

What caused the mass extinction of Earth's first animals?

Fossil records tell us that the first macroscopic animals appeared on Earth about 575 million years ago. Twenty-four million years later, the diversity of animals began to mysteriously decline, leading to Earth's first know ...

Why life on Earth first got big

Some of the earliest complex organisms on Earth—possibly some of the earliest animals to exist—got big not to compete for food, but to spread their offspring as far as possible.

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