Thank you so much for all of your questions! We're winding down now. Take care, everyone!
Hi /r/AskScience! We are members of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, here for our 7th annual AMA. We study fossil fish, mammals, amphibians, and reptiles — anything with a backbone! Our research includes how these organisms lived, how they were affected by environmental change like a changing climate, how they're related, and much more. You can follow us on Twitter @SVP_vertpaleo.
Also, it's National Fossil Day in the US. Please join us in celebrating! Our experts today are:
Matt Borths, Ph.D. (/u/Chapalmalania) is the Curator of Fossils at the Duke Lemur Center at Duke University in Durham, NC. His research focuses on the evolution of carnivorous mammals and primates, especially in Africa and North America. He is also part of several teams working to network natural history collections. Dr. Borths co-produced the paleontology podcast series Past Time (www.pasttime.org).
Stephanie Drumheller, Ph.D. (/u/UglyFossils) is a paleontologist at the University of Tennessee whose research focuses on the processes of fossilization, evolution, and biology, of crocodiles and their relatives, including identifying bite marks on fossils. Find her on Twitter @UglyFossils.
Eugenia Gold, Ph.D. (/u/DrEugeniaGold) is an Assistant Professorin the Biology Department at Suffolk University in Boston, MA. Her research focuses on the evolution of the brain in dinosaurs. Dr. Gold also created www.drneurosaurus.com and co-authored She Found Fossils (and Ella Encontró Fósiles), a children's book about women in paleontology.
Josh Miller, Ph.D. (/u/PaleoJosh) is a paleoecologist and Assistant Professor at the University of Cincinnati. His research focuses on Pleistocene paleoecology, taphonomy, and using fossil and subfossil records to help conserve and manage modern ecosystems (Conservation Paleobiology). Find out more at JoshuaHMiller.com.
Ali Nabavizadeh, Ph.D. (/u/vertpaleoama) an Assistant Professor of Anatomy in the Department of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. His research investigates the comparative anatomy and evolution of herbivorous dinosaurs, dicynodonts, and proboscidea
so when i was a kid i was officially diagnosed with tourette syndrome, OCD & ADHD (inattentive type) and later autism. when i was 11 i was kept in a psych ward for a week, when i was 12 i was kept in a psych ward for 6.5 months, and i generally just always get put back in a psychward again whenever i become unable to stop myself from yelling at & violently attacking others.
tourette syndrome has a common symptom called Sudden Explosive Rage. www.tourette.org describes it as such:
>Usually the child or adult might yell, throw things, perhaps call names, all in a manner that seems unprecipitated. This symptom is neither the fault of the child nor the parents. As it can seem dramatic, many parents blame themselves. In certain school or other systems, they may also be blamed by professionals, friends and family. The matter merits further exploration by school teams, teachers and families. The R.A.G.E. (Repeated Anger Generated Episodes) brochure (Publication M-357, or downloadable publication M-357DD) is an excellent resource for professionals and for parents with children with these symptoms. It will help them understand that there’s no one to blame, and which strategies to employ for children who have neurologically based rage. Sometimes a change in routine or expectation of an event for a child who is inflexible may set off an episode. In fact, experience shows that typical interventions (including negative consequences) only serve to increase these rage episodes. It is critically important that adults in the life of a child with TS become aware of what reduces or increases the child’s explosive responses. In addition, children who are affected by the devastating symptom of neurological rage need trusted adults who can provide care with flexibility and calmness.
i have it pretty bad. a lot of touretters are adults, but it’s weirdly difficult to find supportive resources for adult touretters suffering from Sudden Explosive Rage considering some peg it as being present in as high as 70% of cases. perhaps society doesnt want to reckon with the fact that some murderers could theoretically be 100% innocent.
anyways, so.... ive always been very very medication resistant. meds never do shit for me. so as a last resort for helping me with how severe all my different intermingling symptoms were getting, the psychward i was living in back in 2018 started me on Electro Convulsive Therapy (ECT). it’s basically this thing where they force your brain t... keep reading on reddit ➡
Not counting the tail, which apes have unfortunately lost, most if not all vertebrate lifeforms have the four limbed body plan.
I know dolphins and whales are losing their hind limbs and snakes have for the most part lost all limbs, but aside from those examples, I can't really think if a vertebrate that differs from this base template.
Why? Are four limbs just ridiculously sexy? Is it the best balance between having many limbs and having too many to manage?
We call the Cenozoic the age of mammals, but it would better to call it the age of boreioeutherian placental mammals. Mammals existed longer than the Cenozoic is a thing as small life forms and were peacefully coexisting with other small vertebrate life forms of other clades just fine. After the dinosaurs and other reptiles went extinct, for around 20 million years mammals got larger and large mammals were not alone. Still ecosystems had a thriving mix of mammals, reptiles and flightless birds in the larger size niches. This harmony was kept in island continents like Australia and South America for much longer. The thing that those islands have in common is just one,e absence or severe underrepresentation of boreioeutherian placentals. The world changed when boreioeutherians started to invade continents.
First they obliterated the remaining large reptiles and marsupials from Eurasia, then they invaded Africa, where they replaced all the Afrotherians and Gondwanatherians with few traces. So much that most people think that ungulates and carnivorans were forever native to Africa, which are not. Then they invaded South America and the replaced the marsupials, terror birds and most xenarthrans. Now they are invading Australia, but we don’t know what they will replace there, as most of the megafauna is already extinct. Whenever a catastrophy hit the Cenozoic, boreioeutherians got a boost, whereas other clades got a setback. We see large reptiles, flightless birds, marsupials, afrotherian placentals and xenarthran placentals to have more and more contracted distributions and extinction. There are of course exceptions, like elephants and cangaroos that have a boreioeutherian lifestyle, but exceptions prove rrules.
Boreioeutherians are extremely diverse and their evolution oppresses other types of animals. Cetaceans have blocked the imergence of large bony fishes and marine reptiles. Seals have literally cut off the gateway for marine reptiles to evolve again. Ungulates have cut off xenarthrans, marsupials and tortoises to evolve grazing forms. Bats have blocked so many more niches otherwise available to nocturnal birds. Carnivorans have blocked effectively every other animal to rise to the level of top predator on dry land ecosystems. Boreioeutherians are extremely versatile. You can find the same species of boreioeutherian both in a tropical desert and in an arctic tundra. Species like wolves, foxes, camels, wild goats, rats can adapt to most climatic zones.... keep reading on reddit ➡
I made a dictionary of the scientific names for all of Vermont's vertebrates last year, thought folks might be interested in check it out: An Etymology of Vermont Vertebrates (link)
You can also make a copy of the spreadsheet and enter your own search terms. Enjoy.
Does anyone have these groupme links?
I searched in this subreddit and tried the google sheets list of groupme links but still can't find either for this semester.
[H] Grey dragon lord scorer [W] credits
I just know some species of arthropods and mollusks which are able to change of sex, like some crustaceans (but caused by a parasite) and the most notorious example the snails, which during the breeding receive a hormonal dart for change the sex. But also there are a lot fish species which can change their birth sex (even some species multiple times), for example the clown fishes, which in ausence of enough males can change to females, others like labridae can make the oposite, a dominant female replacing the dominant male.
And from what I know (correct me if I'm wrong), the condition of birth with characteristics of both sexes or with both type of gonads too is considered hermaphroditism, so, in the case of humans, usually this more problematic than functional, because it not only expresses secondary characteristics at the time of reaching adolescence (in men there may be gynecomastia depending on the syndrome and in women testicles may begin to develop), but it also entails multiple diseases.
Currently I dont remember some bird or mammal which have functional hermaphrodistim, whatever have characterisitics of the both sexes or both functional gonads or change of sex during the life.
So my question is would have some utility a functional hermaphroditism in mammals or birds (I mention this two because are know as more "intelligent" or able to become sapient)?
For example a lion pack in which when dies the alpha male, the strongest female change to male, or a specie with the all the memembers "male" and "female" can get pregnant for increase the genetical variation and what if we apply this two previous to sapient animals able to develop societies?, I would not like to go into sociopolitical polemic issues but it is undeniable that sex has a great inference in everyday life and the functioning of society.
I was thinking about how my country's 'National Animal' is the Bengal Tiger and the 'National Bird' is the Indian Peafowl, because according to the layman "Peacock is not an animal, it's a bird!"
That prompted me to wonder if this narrow definition of "animal" is the same everywhere. Has an invertebrate ever been named the National Animal of any country?
stay humble friends
My college recently cancelled the CVA lecture and lab I was super excited to take. I feel like I'm gonna need the information in my career so I want to at least audit a CVA class. Does anyone have any recommendations of where I can get course materials for free/cheap?