Issues of concern to people who live in the west: property rights, water rights, endangered species, livestock grazing, energy production, wilderness and western agriculture. Plus a few items on western history, western literature and the sport of rodeo... Frank DuBois served as the NM Secretary of Agriculture from 1988 to 2003. DuBois is a former legislative assistant to a U.S. Senator, a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Interior, and is the founder of the DuBois Rodeo Scholarship.
Thursday, May 31, 2018
This 240-Million-Year-Old Reptile Is the 'Mother of All Lizards'
HBO's "Game of Thrones" features a "Mother of Dragons," but a fossil that's hundreds of millions of years old was recently identified as the "mother of all lizards" (and snakes, too).
This ancient lizard was the direct ancestor of approximately 10,000 species alive today that have inhabited the planet for more than 240 million years.
Paleontologists initially described the tiny reptile, Megachirella wachtleri, in 2003. But recent scans revealed features in the fossil that were hidden, enabling scientists to identify Megachirella as the oldest known ancestor in the squamate lineage — the reptile group that includes lizards and snakes. Megachirella, which predates the fossils previously thought to belong to the earliest squamates by around 75 million years, bridged the gap between the oldest known squamates and the estimated origins of this reptile group derived from molecular data, researchers reported in a new study...MORE