A new study that documented rapid changes in the physiology of snail kites in the Florida Everglades has prompted researchers to question exactly how fast evolution can occur in a longer-lived animal – in this case: instead of occurring over a long period of time, over numerous successive generations; the changes in these birds, prompted by the introduction of a new species of prey available to them, took place in less than one-and-a-half generations.
A new study has uncovered evidence for a previously-unknown species of archaic human that may have contributed to the genetic makeup of a group of people living in modern-day Sub-Saharan Africa. Aside from revealing that there may have been even more species of early hominim than those that we know of, this finding is part of a growing body of evidence that suggests that interbreeding between the various early species of humans, such as Neanderthals and Denisovans, was not that uncommon.
"It seems that interbreeding between different early hominin species is not the exception — it’s the norm," explains assistant professor of biological sciences Omer Gokcumen, PhD, with the University at Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences.
In recent years, paleontologists have been breaking new ground in what would have been previously considered an impossible source of information in their field: that of soft tissue, recovered from otherwise ancient dinosaur fossils. As this new field of study expands, researchers have announced the discovery of intact blood vessels in a dinosaur fossil, and at 80 million years old, it is the oldest find of it’s kind.