In this pandemic where many museums are closed, we decided to immerse you in many discoveries that you can admire right from your home!
19 incredible fossils
We know many of you have a real passion for dinosaurs and other ancient creatures. That’s why we decided to immerse you in the daily life of a paleontologist through 19 incredible discoveries.
1) The enormous size of an Argentinosaurus leg
The Argentinosaurus is one of the largest dinosaurs ever discovered in the world. Only some of his bones were found in Argentina in 1989.
It is estimated that his leg is 4.5 meters and his body is 35 meters long and weighs no less than 80 tons. So it would be more than ten times heavier than an elephant!
2) The fossil of an incredibly well-preserved boreal delta
Borealopelta is a genus of ankylosaurs (herbivorous dinosaurs) that lived about 110 million years ago in the Late Cretaceous Period. This fossil was found in Alberta, Canada in the Millennium Mine, an oil sands mine owned by Suncor Energy.
Due to its size, this specimen is considered to be the best preserved fossil ever found.
3) A multicolored ammonite
Ammonites are ancient marine molluscs that, like many other species, became extinct after the Cretaceous-Paleocene Crisis 66 million years ago.
While ammonites usually turn brown in color when fossilized, a specimen found in Alberta, Canada took a completely different route. Indeed, during the process this ammonite has turned brilliant and rainbow colored, and the result is just great!
4) a wagon-sized turtle shell
This fossil is that of a Stupendemys, that is, an ancient giant tortoise with a shell that can protect it from any predator. This species is considered to be the largest turtle ever to exist.
Its 3.3-meter-high shell enabled it to protect itself from its worst enemy, the Purussaurus, a type of caiman no less than 10 meters tall.
5) A detailed Edmontosaurus fossil
The Edmontosaurus is a large, duck-billed herbivorous dinosaur that lived 73 to 66 million years ago.
This fossil represents a very special paleontological discovery because its bones and skin are so intact that we were able to learn more about this extinct species.
6) Crinoids that marked cinema
If the Crinoid species still exists today, the fossils of their version of yesterday are just terrifying …
In addition, these water lilies shaped the spirits in such a way that they were a real source of inspiration for the producers of the film Alien.
7) Wadi Al-Hitan, the valley of the whales
Located southwest of Cairo in Egypt, the Valley of the Whales is a site with hundreds of whale fossils in one place. The place was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
The discovery of the site, also known as Ouadi Al-Hitan, is a great step forward that has enabled us to learn more about whales, but also a whole host of other marine species, many of which have been fossilized.
8) Altamura Man, the most complete Neanderthal skeleton ever discovered
Discovered in a cave in Italy 27 years ago, the Altamura Man is the name of the human fossil found there.
The skeleton of the Neanderthals seems to be perfectly preserved. All thanks to the limestone that covered his bones.
For the record, this man got stuck in the cave and likely died slowly due to starvation and lack of water.
9) A Chaohusaurus fossil at birth
The birth of a child is a dangerous time for many species. The Chaohusaurus is no exception to the rule. In fact, a fossil of this 248 million year old specimen was found in China in 2011. Above we see a woman giving birth to three young.
Unfortunately, it will all end badly. Only the mother’s body with one baby ready to be born inside and one coming out has been found.
10) The fossil of a two-headed reptile
Fossils are already extremely rare, but when we add the fact that they testify to the existence of an ancient, malformed creature, they just become unique.
This is what was found in China. The reptile has not one but two heads. It would therefore be an embryonic creature seven centimeters long, suffering from a malformation, and not a superposition of imprints of multiple bodies as some would have previously suggested.
11) an opalized dinosaur tooth
This mysterious tooth was found in Lightning Ridge, Australia. The dinosaur it belonged to has unfortunately not been identified. All we really know is that the tooth has turned opal over time and is now a great display!
12) A fossil that testifies to a battle
A strange fossil was found south of the Gobi desert. This shows two dinosaurs competing against each other, a Velociraptor (2 meters for 80 kilos) and a Protoceratops (herbivore of 1.8 meters). But how could such a moment be immortalized?
The answer is simple. A sandstorm buried the two beings as they fought valiantly. In the end, this gives an impressive result, as if the scene was captured in an instant like a photo.
13) Lloyds Bank Coprolite, the world’s largest fossilized human feces
Here is an unusual fossil. It was found in York, England and is evidence of the Viking Age.
The shit is eight inches long and five inches wide, about the size of a flashlight. His analysis revealed that the original had intestinal worms and mainly ate meat and bread.
14) A soft tissue fossil from Edmontosaurus
This particular fossil of Edmontosaurus, a duck-billed herbivore, was discovered in Hell Creeck, North Dakota. It would belong to a specimen that lived 67 million years ago, measures 12 meters and weighs 35 tons.
This Edmontosaurus fossil is of particular importance, especially because it gives a glimpse into the soft tissues of the animal, namely the skin and muscles. Through his analysis, the researchers made many discoveries, such as the fact that Edmontosaurus had heavier tails than previously thought, but also that they ran faster.
15) The discovery of a complete T-Rex skeleton
In 2006 paleontology took a giant leap forward when it discovered a 67 million year old T. rex skeleton. This is the first time that we have taken hold of the creature with all of its bones in their natural position.
The T-Rex was in a bitter confrontation with a Triceratops at the time of its death.
16) a snake fossil devouring baby dinosaurs
Each fossil has its own story and this is no exception to the rule. Indeed, researchers have got their hands on a fossil that is simply extraordinary. This shows a scene in which a snake is about to eat a small dinosaur.
Although the fossil is not in very good condition, it was a unique find. There is great evidence that snakes ate dinosaurs. However, given the size of these creatures in adulthood, snakes would then have to resort to very small prey, such as babies.
17) The fossil of a tree embedded in a cliff
Joggins, Nova Scotia is a fascinating place that is home to many fossilized plants. Fossils of practically extinct trees can therefore be found there.
The place has been the subject of many theories and geologists are still trying to learn more about this type of tree, which can reach a height of 30 meters.
18) Fossilization of fossilized turtles
Fossils that represent pairings are not as rare as one might think. In fact, around thirty have already been discovered. But in 1987 old turtles were found in Germany in full swing. It is important to note that only insects have been found in this position so far. So this is a first.
The two turtles were killed when they sank in a lake that contained poisonous water caused by a volcano.
19) Leonardo, the “best preserved dinosaur in the world”
The one we call Leonardo is actually a Brachylophosaurus, namely a herbivorous dinosaur with a “duck bill”. Its fossil was discovered in 2000 and is considered a major find. His skeleton is mummified and fully posable for good reason.