VIDEO: Albarn praises 'brave' Latitude

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 14:32
Blur front man Damon Albarn praises the Latitude Festival for giving him a headline slot off the back of his "slow" album.
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VIDEO: Thousands camping for Glasgow Games

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 13:29
Thousands of people are staying in the tents at specially designated sites across Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games.
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Mammoth and Mastodon Behavior was less roam, more stay at home

Heritage Daily - Tue, 2014-07-22 11:48
According to research conducted by the University of Cincinnati, the fuzzy relatives of modern-day elephants liked living in Greater Cincinnati long before it became the trendy hot spot it is today- at the end of the last ice age. A study led by Brooke Crowley, an assistant professor of geology and anthropology, shows the ancient proboscideans enjoyed the area to such an extent that they probably resided there year round and were not the nomadic migrants as previously thought.

The research team has found that they even had their own preferred hangouts. Crowley’s findings indicate each species kept to separate areas based on availability of favored foods.

“I suspect that this was a pretty nice place to live, relatively speaking,” Crowley says. “Our data suggest that animals probably had what they needed to survive here year-round.”

The research that Crowley conducted with co-author and recent UC graduate Eric Baumann, “Stable Isotopes Reveal Ecological Differences Among Now-Extinct Proboscideans from the Cincinnati Region, USA”, was published in the international academic research journal, Boreas.

Mammoth vs Mastodon: WikiPedia

Could the Past save the Future?

Obtaining more information regarding the different behaviors of prehistoric animals has the possibility of benefiting the survival of their modern-day cousins, African and Asian elephants. Both species are on the World Wildlife Fund’s endangered species list. Studying how different types of elephants might have been in the past, Crowley says, might help ongoing efforts to protect these large land mammals from continued threats such as poaching and habitat destruction.

“There are regionally different stories going on,” Crowley says. “There’s not one overarching theme that we can say about a mammoth or a mastodon. And that’s becoming more obvious in studies people are doing in different places. A mammoth in Florida did not behave the same as one in New York, Wyoming, California, Mexico or Ohio.”

The Wisdom in Teeth

During their research Crowley and Baumann looked at the wisdom in teeth- specifically museum specimens of molars from four mastodons and eight mammoths from Southwestern Ohio and Northwestern Kentucky. Carefully drilling a tooth’s surface and proceeding to analyse the stable carbon, oxygen, and strontium signatures in the powdered enamel can reveal a lot of information.

Each of these elements conveys a different story. Carbon exposes insight into an animal’s diet, oxygen relates to overall climatic conditions of an animal’s environment and strontium indicates the amount of travelling an animal undertook whilst the tooth was developing.

“Strontium reflects the bedrock geology of a location,” Crowley says. “So if a local animal grows its tooth and mineralizes it locally and dies locally, the strontium isotope ratio in its tooth will reflect the place where it lived and died. If an animal grows its tooth in one place and then moves elsewhere, the strontium in its tooth is going to reflect where it came from, not where it died.”

The in-depth analyses allowed the researchers to determine several things including the different diets of mammoths and mastodons; mammoths typically consumed more grasses and sedges than mastodons, who preferred leaves from trees or shrubs.

One of their key findings however, was that the strontium from all the specimens studied, except one mastodon, matched local water samples, suggesting they were less mobile and migratory than previously thought. This was coupled with the discovery that there were differences in strontium and carbon between mammoths and mastodons, which implies they did not reside in the same localities.


Contributing Source: University of Cincinnati

Header Image Source: WikiPedia





Categories: General

AUDIO: Girl refused school trip after mum's death

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 11:35
A school has apologised after an 11-year-old was left out of a reward for 100% attendance because she had a day off for her mother's funeral.
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AUDIO: Growing up with parents in prison

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 11:18
Teenagers describe growing up with parents in prison, as a charity calls for more support.
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AUDIO: Warm weather boosts slug numbers

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 11:07
There has been an increase in the number of slugs in Britain's gardens due to the warm and damp weather.
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VIDEO: Shock over ill son's holiday refusal

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 10:12
A mother has said she was shocked to be told she was not authorised to take her terminally ill son out of school to go on holiday.
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Science and art bring back to life 300 million-year-old specimens of a primitive reptile-like vertebrate

Heritage Daily - Tue, 2014-07-22 09:45
Palaeontologists from the Natural History Museum and academics from Lincoln, Cambridge and Slovakia have managed to recreate the cranial structure of a 308-million-year-old lizard-like vertebrate that could potentially be the earliest example of a reptile and explain the origin of all vertebrates that belong to reptiles, birds and mammals.

Dr. Marcello Ruta, from the School of Life Sciences, University of Lincoln, was one of the co-authors of the paper that was published in the Journal of Vertebrate Palaeontology and produced a series of intricate hand-drawn recreations of the cranial structure of Gephyrostegus.

Ruta’s intricate hand drawing: University of Lincoln

Palaeontologists have provided a cranial reconstruction of a long-extinct limbed vertebrate (tetrapod) from previously unrecognized specimens discovered in coal deposits from the Czech Republic.

The team of academics reviewed the cranial structural features of the Late Carboniferous Gephyrostegus bohemicus- a small animal with a lizard-like build that roamed the earth 308 million years ago.

It has been found that this early tetrapod may be the earliest example of a reptile and explain the origin of amniotes, all vertebrates that belong to reptiles, birds and mammals.

Experts from, Comenius University in Bratislava (Slovakia), University Museum of Zoology in Cambridge, The Natural History Museum in London, and the University of Lincoln have been able to study additional specimens unavailable in previous works.

Ruta explained: “Gephyrostegus has always been an elusive beast. Several researchers have long considered the possibility that the superficially reptile-like features of this animal might tell us something about amniote ancestry. But Gephyrostegus also shows some much generalised skeletal features that make the issue of its origin even more problematic. We conducted a new study that brings together data from a large number of early tetrapods. The study shows that Gephyrostegus is closely related to another group of Eurasiatic and North American tetrapods called seymouriamorphs, also involved in debates about amniote ancestry. We found some interesting new cranial features in Gephyrostegus that helped us establish this link.

“Staring at specimens for a long time down a microscope and trying to make sense of their anatomy may be frustrating and tiring at times, but always immensely rewarding.”


Contributing Source: University of Lincoln

Header Image Source: Fotopedia


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Archive Intern Week 7: The Witch in the Basement

Wessex Archaeology - Tue, 2014-07-22 08:56

I’m told that the life of an archivist is mostly spent ferreting away in the well regulated temperature of the archives room and yet whilst this image is terribly appealing in such hot weather, this week I attended an event held by Santander and the University of Sheffield. Alas the coolness of the room was not on par with the basement, but the delicious free sandwiches, quiche and spring rolls helped me cope. The event was to highlight the partnership between the two institutions and to promote the work they do together. Hannah and I were invited as we are fortunate enough to have our internships part funded by this partnership. Without the partnership between Wessex and the University, the internship opportunity would not have been possible and other Wessex staff involved in the setup and day to day supervision of the internships were also invited – Andrew Norton, Richard O’Neill and Jess Tibber.  We were introduced to Simon Bray who heads the Santander Universities initiative and I think he was really impressed with the variety of experiences that we have accrued since the inception of our internships – from the Bronze Age Cremation Urn that I’ve been looking at as part of an archive due for deposition, to the community work that Hannah has been engaged with on the Exploring Tinsley Manor Project; our internships with Wessex Archaeology have shown the amazing variety that Wessex has to offer.  The social events don’t stop there as this week Wessex Archaeology Chair Eugenie Turton and Commercial Director Peter Dean visited our Sheffield office and were given a tour of the archives room (Eugenie particularly liked “the witch in the basement”) and next week I shall be travelling down to our Salisbury office to see the huge archives at Portway House and get stuck in there! By Emma Carter
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VIDEO: Birthday celebrations for Prince George

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 07:01
Prince George celebrates his first birthday on Tuesday and to mark the occasion two new pictures have been released by Kensington Palace.
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VIDEO: Beauty queen becomes weightlifter

BBC test - Tue, 2014-07-22 04:53
Sarah Davies says "strong is the new sexy" and is aiming to change the way women view themselves.
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Burning boats, glass plates and mass observation as Brighton Photo Biennial returns

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
Under the slogan Communities, Collectives and Collaboration, the sixth edition of UK’s largest photo festival will showcase the work of 45 photographers and artists.
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In Pictures: Discovering Tutankhamun at the Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
The Ashmolean's summer exhibition tells the story of one of the most significant archaeological discoveries ever made: the discovery of the tomb of the 'boy king'.
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Brighton Photography Biennial focuses on group work in art

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
Under the slogan Communities, Collectives and Collaboration, the sixth edition of UK’s largest photography festival will showcase the work of 45 photographers and artists throughout Brighton and Hove.
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Archaeologists find baths of "sociable" Romans and early evidence of Christianity

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
An unusually early Christian silver ring, a bath with a bread oven and butchered animal bones are among the finds at a site near Bishops Auckland revealing 1,800 years of history.
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Festival of Archaeology 2014: Katie Marsden on medieval finds and a World War I medal

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
More than 12,000 records have been created since the Portable Antiquities Scheme began in Essex in 2003. The county’s Finds Liaison Officer tells Culture24 about two.
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Medieval choral composition by DJ Goldie to be performed at Glasgow Cathedral

24 Hour Museum - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:00
An electronic composition by the renowned Drum and Bass musician will see a live acoustic performance in the Glasgow Cathedral at the end of August.
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VIDEO: Teenager dies at quad bike race

BBC test - Mon, 2014-07-21 21:15
A teenage quad biker who died during a motocross event in Ceredigion is named as Daniel Roch from Pembrokeshire.
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VIDEO: Tulisa's drugs trial collapses

BBC test - Mon, 2014-07-21 19:57
Singer and TV star Tulisa Contostavlos's trial over drugs allegations collapses as the judge accuses a prosecution witness of perjury.
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VIDEO: Tesco boss Philip Clarke quits

BBC test - Mon, 2014-07-21 18:42
Tesco has announced it is replacing its chief executive, Philip Clarke, after its worst sales performance in years.
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