Society News

PRESS RELEASE - Fossil of giant, bony-toothed bird from Chile sets new record for wingspan

Posted: September 15, 2010
DEERFIELD, IL  (May, 2010) – A newly discovered skeleton of an ancient seabird from northern Chile provides evidence that giant birds were soaring the skies there 5-10 million years ago. The wing bones of the animal exceed those of all other birds in length; its wingspan would have been at least 5.2 m (17 ft.). This is the largest safely established wingspan for a bird. Other, larger estimates for fossil birds have been...  Read More

SVP News Bulletin Retires In Its Current Form

Posted: September 15, 2010
Dear SVP Members, Few things have changed as rapidly over the last several years as the way we communicate. We have all seen an exponential increase in the speed and volume of information exchanges in our lives. As part of this zeitgeist, the SVP Web site is carrying more and more of the Society’s news at an ever-quicker pace, resulting in a duplication of information formerly carried exclusively by the SVP News Bulletin. ...  Read More

A Future for Geological Sciences at Michigan State

Posted: July 29, 2010
I am very pleased to pass along to SVP members the news that, following a period in which the Department of Geological Sciences at Michigan State University was threatened with closure, a plan has been developed and approved that focuses on securing the future of geosciences at MSU. The plan has the backing of our Dean and the MSU Provost and President. It involves a series of steps over the next five years to increase research fu...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Remarkable fossil cave shows how ancient marsupials grew

Posted: July 14, 2010
DEERFIELD, IL  (July 14, 2010) – The discovery of a remarkable 15-million-year-old Australian fossil limestone cave packed with even older animal bones has revealed almost the entire life cycle of a large prehistoric marsupial, from suckling young in the pouch still cutting their milk teeth to elderly adults.  In an unprecedented find, a team of University of New South Wales (UNSW) researchers has unearthed from ...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Prominent Paleontologist Honored by Alberta Order of Excellence

Posted: June 20, 2010
DEERFIELD, IL (June 24, 2010) – Dr. Phillip Currie, Vice President of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, professor at the University of Alberta, and a world-renowned expert on dinosaurs, has been honored with investiture in the Alberta Order of Excellence (AOE).  The AOE is the highest honor the province can bestow on a citizen.  Dr. Currie is one of only eight new members for 2010 and will be inducted into th...  Read More

Highlight Excellence in Vertebrate Paleontology – Apply or Submit a Nomination for an SVP Award

Posted: June 7, 2010
Apply or Nominate Someone for one of 18 Different SVP Awards, Prizes, and Grants Recognize the achievements of a colleague and bring awareness to the important discoveries taking place in the field of vertebrate paleontology. The SVP is now accepting submissions for a variety of awards, grants and prizes through the SVP Online Awards Submission System and Lanzendorf PaleoArt Prize Online Submission System. Online s...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - New skeletons from the Age of Dinosaurs answer century-old questions

Posted: May 20, 2010
  DEERFIELD, IL  (May, 2010) – More than 100 years ago paleontologist E. D. Cope of "Dinosaur Wars" fame found a few fragmentary bones of a reptile in the deserts of New Mexico. He named the reptile Typothorax. A century later Typothorax, which belongs to a group of reptiles called aetosaurs, remained something of a mystery, known mainly from pieces of armor, a few limb bones, and some sectio...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - New Bird Fossil Hints at More Undiscovered Chinese Treasures

Posted: March 24, 2010
  DEERFIELD, IL (March 24, 2010) – The study of Mesozoic birds and the dinosaur-bird transition is one of the most exciting and vigorous fields in vertebrate paleontology today. A newly described bird from the Jehol Biota of northeast China suggests that scientists have only tapped a small proportion of the birds and dinosaurs that were living at that time, and that the rocks still have many secrets to reveal. &q...  Read More

Further Update on the Proposed Drilling on Ellesmere Island

Posted: March 3, 2010
Colleagues and Members of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, I'm writing to let you know of the Nunavut Impact Review Board’s (NIRB) response to Weststar's proposed Ellesmere Island Coal Project. I have attached their letter (now posted on the NIRB Web site), and the news couldn't be better!  Given the potential adverse impacts to wildlife and paleontological resources, NIRB has recommen...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - New Species of Tyrannosaur DIiscovered in Southwestern U.S.

Posted: January 29, 2010
  DEERFIELD, IL (January 29, 2010) -- New Mexico is known for amazing local cuisine, Aztec ruins and the Los Alamos National Laboratory.  In the January issue of the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, paleontologists Thomas Williamson of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Thomas Carr of Carthage College bring a new superstar to the state. Bistahieversor sealeyi (pronounced: bistah-he-ee-versor&nbs...  Read More

Letter to the NIRB re: Ellesmere Island

Posted: January 22, 2010
Expressing concern over the possible loss of fossil resources in regards to a proposed coal mining project by Westar Resources, Inc. on Ellesmere Island (Nunavut) in Canada's eastern High Arctic, the SVP has issued a press release, alerted its membership, posted a statement and would now like to share the letter sent to the Nunavut Impact Review Board.     Read More

Update on Ellesmere Island

Posted: January 22, 2010
While no decisions have been made regarding the proposed coal mining project on Ellesmere Island in Canda, the SVP's efforts have drawn local attention to the concern over the possible loss of fossil resources. Follow this link to an article from the CBC News: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/north/story/2010/01/21/ellesmere-weststar-fossils.html  Read More

TIME SENSITIVE re: Proposed Mining of Ellesmere Island

Posted: January 14, 2010
TIME SENSITIVE COMMUNICATION  Dear members and colleagues, As some of you may have heard, a proposed coal mining exploration project for Ellesmere Island (Nunavut) is currently under review. The proposed drilling areas include some of the most important fossil sites in the Arctic including known Pliocene and Eocene fossil sites in the Strathcona Fiord area. If you are interested in writing a letter of concern, it should...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Concern Over Possible Loss of Fossil Resources

Posted: January 14, 2010
DEERFIELD, IL (January 14, 2010) – A proposed coal mining project by Westar Resources, Inc. on Ellesmere Island (Nunavut) in Canada's eastern High Arctic is currently under review by the Nunavut Impact Review Board (NIRB), an environmental assessment agency established under the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement whose objectives are to protect and promote the well-being of the residents, communities and ecosystems of Nun...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Light shed on koala evolution

Posted: December 14, 2009
DEERFIELD, IL (December, 2009) – The world at large knows koalas as cute, cuddly, lovable iconic animals. The evolutionary biologist, on the other hand, will know them as extremely specialized, endangered animals, the evolutionary history of which is extremely poorly understood. Recently discovered skull material belonging to the extinct koalas Litokoala and Nimiokoala offers a major step forward in understanding koala evo...  Read More

Petition re: Proposed Closing of the Dept. of Geo. Sciences at Michigan State University

Posted: November 12, 2009
To all: The Department of Geological Sciences at Michigan State University is home to a nationally and internationally prominent, vibrant group of students, faculty and staff. As a response to current budget distress, the Board of Trustees and Provost Kim A. Wilcox are considering a proposal to close the Department, along with all of the graduate and undergraduate programs offered by the Department. The immediate effect will be ...  Read More

SVP Supports NSC Alliances Proposed Executive Order

Posted: October 14, 2009
7 October 2009 Dr. John Holdren, Director Office of Science and Technology Policy Executive Office of the President 725 17th Street Room 5228 Washington, DC 20502 Dear Dr. Holdren: On behalf of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology (SVP), I write to express strong support for the Natural Science Collections Alliance (NSC Alliance) proposed Executive Order for issuance by President Obama to promote the preservation and use of ...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Paleontologists Concerned Over Fossil Sale

Posted: October 6, 2009
Deerfield, IL (Oct. 6, 2009) - On October 3, the skeleton of a 40-foot-long, 7.5 ton dinosaur was put up for auction in Las Vegas. The dinosaur in question was a skeleton of Tyrannosaurus rex, the iconic flesh-eating dinosaur that lived some 66 million years ago. Nicknamed "Samson," the fossil, which was found on private land in 1987 and was being sold by a private owner, was expected to fetch a pr...  Read More

PRESS RELEASE - Extinct, giant eagle was a fearsome predator

Posted: September 14, 2009
DEERFIELD, IL  (September, 2009) – Before humans colonized New Zealand about 750 years ago, the largest inhabitants of the islands were birds unlike those anywhere else in the world. Giant, flightless birds known as moa were the main plant-eaters, feeding both on the ground and in the branches of trees. The role of predator, according to a study published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, was filled by a giant,...  Read More

SVP Global Climate Change Forum Videos now on the SVP Web site

Posted: August 13, 2009
In these three videos from the Climate Forum at the 2008 SVP annual meeting in Cleveland, three global-change scientists share how insights gained from the fossil record of ecological and evolutionary responses of plants and animals apply to climate changes underway today. These videos can be found on the SVP Web site at: http://www.vertpaleo.org/video/Climate/index.cfm.  Read More
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