EH Science: Ankylosaurus_skull, By William Diller Matthew (1871-1930) Paleontology 

Armored Dinosaurs, Elaborate Nasal Passages

Since paleontologists began using CT scans and 3D reconstructions of dinosaur remains, they have been able to tell us much more about dinosaurs than ever before. Now a new study shows that armor-plated dinosaurs (ankylosaurs) had the capacity to modify the temperature of the air they breathed using nasal passages shaped like “crazy straws.” We know that animals use strategies such as sweating, panting, and swimming to prevent their brains from overheating. However, the ankylosaur appears to have relied upon its long and winding nasal cavity to cool down, using…

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This image is a finite element analysis result, showing how stress is distributed through the skull under an incisor bite at a wide gape angle (UMass Amherst) Paleontology 

Fossil Offers Clues to Evolution of Mammals

About 70 million years ago, in the heyday of the dinosaurs, a groundhog-like mammal lived on the island of Madagascar. Weighing an estimated 20 pounds (9 kg), it was the largest mammal of its time. The mammal is named Vintana sertichi. Its fossilized skull was found in a geological formation that was deposited when a great variety of dinosaurs roamed the earth. With a skull that is almost five inches (125 mm) long, it was double the size of other mammals alive on the southern supercontinent, Gondwana, during the Age…

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