- Country singer Tim McGraw not sorry for slapping female fan: ‘Things happen’
- Iraq vet cited for owning 14 therapeutic pet ducks
- White House takes credit for drop in unaccompanied children at border
- International crises be damned, Obama’s fundraising trip must go on
- Friend of bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev found guilty of impeding probe
- Train with MH17 plane crash bodies leaves rebel town in Ukraine
- Half of Colorado voters are OK with Hobby Lobby decision, poll shows
- HIV-killing condom to soon hit shelves in Australia
- Estonia pulls plug on Steven Seagal over praise for Putin
- Lawyer: Pelvic exam pics cost Hopkins $190 million
1st dinosaur fossil discovered in Angola
Question of the Day
JOHANNESBURG (AP) - Scientists say they have discovered the first fossil of a dinosaur in Angola, and that it’s a new creature, heralding a research renaissance in a country slowly emerging from decades of war.
A paper published Wednesday in the Annals of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences describes a long-necked, plant-eating sauropod, among the largest creatures ever to have walked the earth. The international team that found and identified the fossilized forelimb bone say it is from a previously unknown dinosaur, citing unique skeletal characteristics.
The fossil was found along with fish and shark teeth in what would have been a sea bed 90 million years ago, leading its discoverers to believe the dinosaur might have been washed into the sea and torn apart by ancient sharks.
The new dinosaur has been dubbed Angolatitan adamastor _ Angolatitan means “Angolan giant” and the adamastor is a sea giant from Portuguese sailing myths.
Matthew F. Bonnan, a sauropod expert at Western Illinois University, was not involved with the Angolan research. But after reading the report, he said he expected their claim to have found a new dinosaur to hold up.
“I think they’ve been very careful,” he said, adding the find could add to knowledge about how sauropods adapted to different environments.
“The neat thing about dinosaur paleontology is that it’s becoming more global,” he said, saying that was giving scientists a global perspective on the evolution of dinosaurs.
“The more people and places that we involve in science, the better off we all are,” Bonnan said.
“Angola has had more than its share of civil war,” said Dutch project member Anne Schulp of the Natuurhistorisch Museum Maastricht. He said science hasn’t been a priority, but “Angola is catching up right now.”
An anti-colonial war broke out in Angola in the 1960s, and civil war followed independence from Portugal in 1975. The fighting ended in 2002 when the army killed rebel leader Jonas Savimbi. The country was left littered with land mines and impoverished. The discovery of oil in recent years has set off an economic boom, but many Angolans have been left behind.
PaleoAngola member Octavio Mateus of Portugal’s Universidade Nova de Lisboa and Museum of Lourinha said lack of money has been the greatest barrier to research.
“We don’t have problems with land mines, we don’t have problems with safety” despite the country’s troubled past, Mateus said.
Tatiana Tavares of the Universidade Agostinho Neto is also on the PaleoAngola team, and her Luanda, Angola university has Angolaitan adamastor fossil specimens on public display. Other specimens in Portugal will later be returned to the university.
TWT Video Picks
U.S. appetite for drugs begets violence migrants are fleeing
- IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 computer hard drives
- Jewish woman booted from JetBlue flight over fight with Palestinian
- Edward Snowden to work with Russia on anti-spy technology
- Rihanna, Dwight Howard delete #FreePalestine tweets
- YOUNG: A sinking presidency, deeper after November?
- PRUDEN: A deadly enemy within exacerbating immigration crisis
- MERRY: Handicaps in Hillary's way
- Driver who killed teen on bike sues family for $1.3 million
- Bill Maher blames Hamas for Gaza violence: 'Do you really expect the Israelis not to retaliate?'
- HUMPHRIES: 'Hes the Worst President in 70 Years'
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq