Thursday, October 28, 2010

[Geology2] New discoveries in Great Plains bring ammonites to life

New discoveries in North America's Great Plains bring ammonites to life [USA], October 13, 2010

New research on ammonites, a group of previously common marine
invertebrates that went extinct after the Chicxuluxb impact 65 million
years ago, is filling in details about the biology of these organisms.

Although ammonites have been extinct for 65 million years, newly
published data based on 35 years of field work and analysis is providing
invaluable insights into their paleobiology. Ammonites, shelled mollusks
closely related to modern day nautilus and squids, inhabited the oceans
for nearly 350 million years. Specimens found in the rock record of the
ancient seaway that covered North America during the Cretaceous Period
demonstrate that these animals thrived at cold methane seeps at the
bottom of the sea, consumed small prey, and often survived predation


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