A skeleton of the giant Triassic ichthyosaur Shonisaurus popularis hangs in the Nevada State Museum.

Whale-Sized Marine Reptiles Once Ruled the Seas

Paleontologists are beginning to learn how and why ichthyosaurs evolved into giants

Paleontologists are just beginning to uncover the evolutionary backstory of armored dinosaurs like the ankylosaur Euoplocephalus.

New Fossil Finds Track When Armored Dinosaurs Spread Around the World

Discoveries in Asia and Africa are rewriting the backstory of dinosaurs like <em>Stegosaurus</em>

A snorkeler comes face to face with a humpback whale. If humans work to halt climate change, that may help prevent another mass extinction event in the oceans.

Without Action on Climate, Another Mass Extinction Event Will Likely Happen in the World's Oceans

Marine species at the poles will face increasing pressure if warming isn’t curbed

An&nbsp;Edmontosaurus&nbsp;herd grazes in a forest.

The Last Day of a Doomed Dinosaur

The young, eighteen-foot-long Edmontosaurus had no idea about his fate as he grazed in a forest

A view of a Palouse Falls in Palouse Falls State Park in Washington. Geologists believe massive floods carved out this canyon and others in the Scablands.

Devastating Ice Age Floods That Occurred in the Pacific Northwest Fascinate Scientists

The Scablands were formed by tremendous and rapid change, and may have something to teach us about geological processes on Mars

Cycads growing in Litchfield National Park in Australia.

Many of These Plants Older Than Dinosaurs Face Extinction

Cycads have changed a great deal since they first appeared around 280 million years ago, and habitat loss and illegal trade are now threats

A Spinosaurs hunts a Onchopristis underwater. Dense bones helped the predator swim at depth.

Heavy Bones Helped Some Spinosaurs Swim

The crock-snouted dinosaurs were just as capable in the water as on land

A fossil of a Diegoaelurus jawbone was recovered from a construction site in Oceanside, California.

Paleontologists Uncover the Oldest Sabertoothed Predator

Fossil jaw shows earliest evidence of a specialized carnivore with scimitar-shaped fangs

Reconstruction of debris surging into the Tanis River as impact spherules rain down from the sky. A dinosaur tries to get away from the disaster.

Asteroid That Decimated the Dinosaurs Struck in Spring

Clues from fossil fish help scientists pinpoint the season when Earth’s fifth mass extinction began

An illustration of Tetrapodophis, a lizard that was named based on a fossil likely smuggled out of Brazil to Germany

Why Smuggled Fossils Are Hurting Paleontology

Parachute science and lingering colonialism in fossil studies have negatively impacted the discipline

A restoration of the extinct whale Phiomicetus, named by paleontologists earlier this year, preying upon a sawfish.

Whales Once Walked Along the Coasts of North America

Increasing fossil finds are helping researchers understand how such early whales made their way to the continent

The tyrannosaur Nanuqsaurus, which lived in the Arctic, with its young. New evidence suggests dinosaurs nested in the cold, dark region.

The Top Ten Dinosaur Discoveries of 2021

The key finds and moments in a year packed with amazing stories about the terrible lizards

An artist’s reconstruction of a baby oviraptorid curled up inside its egg

Dinosaur Embryos Tucked Themselves in Just Like Birds

A stunning fossil egg has allowed paleontologists to find new clues about a dinosaur’s early development

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The Best Books of 2021

The Ten Best Science Books of 2021

From captivating memoirs by researchers to illuminating narratives by veteran science journalists, these works affected us the most this year

Mosasaurus was among the largest and last of the sea-dwelling mosasaurs.

Giant Sea Lizards Ruled the Waves While T. Rex Roamed on Land

A new fossil discovery shows marine reptiles called mosasaurs lived up until the asteroid impact that killed non-avian dinosaurs

A gharial has the same skull shape as some extinct crocodiles. This skull shape has likely evolved three different times during the history of crocodiles.

Modern Crocodiles Are Evolving at a Rapid Rate

Despite their reputation as "living fossils," crocodiles have changed dramatically in the last two million years

The apex predator Ulughbegsaurus was much larger than the contemporaneous tyrannosaur Timurlengia.

Beyond Dinosaurs: The Secrets of Earth's Past

New, Giant Carnivorous Dinosaur Was a Terror to Smaller Tyrannosaurs

A fossil jaw reveals the large predator lived 90 million years ago

An adult male woolly mammoth navigates a mountain pass 17,100 years ago.

Beyond Dinosaurs: The Secrets of Earth's Past

Woolly Mammoths Roamed Far and Wide Just Like Living Elephants

A new analysis of a mammoth tusk tracks the movements of an Ice Age icon

Paleontologist François Therrien measures the jaws of a Gorgosaurus.

Tyrannosaurs Dominated Their Cretaceous Ecosystems

Studies of body size and bite force show that the predators, from babies to adults, filled many niches in their environment

The ancient mammal Gobioconodon (right) squabbles with a therian mammal over a meal in the Late Cretaceous.

Other Mammals, Not Dinosaurs, Kept Our Ancestors Down

The asteroid impact that ended the Cretaceous gave our mammalian ancestors, the therians, an edge over their mammalian competitors

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