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DigiMorph
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The Digital Morphology library is a dynamic archive of information on digital morphology and high-resolution X-ray computed tomography of biological specimens. Browse through the site and see spectacular imagery and animations and details on the morphology of many representatives of the Earth's biota. Recent additions or updates to the site include:

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Balanoff and coauthors described this egg as that of a neoceratopsian dinosaur in 2008. However, further examination of the high-resolution X-ray CT data resulted in reidentification of the specimen as that of an enantiornithine bird. In their new PLoS ONE paper, Varricchio and coauthors state that the embryo exhibits avian apomorphies including a strut-like coracoid and an ulna longer than its humerus. Learn more about this egg unscrambling here.  [more...] 
A 17-My-Old Ziphiid Whale2015-05-26 12:00:00
A 17-My-Old Ziphiid Whale
Wichura and coauthors recently described a beaked whale fossil from the Turkana region of Kenya that was found a considerable distance inland from the present-day coastline of the Indian Ocean. Their Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences paper discusses the paleoenvironmental implications of this discovery. Learn more by reading the DigiMorph account.  [more...] 
Duchesnean Primate, Rooneyia viejaensis2014-05-22 12:00:00
Duchesnean Primate, <i>Rooneyia viejaensis</i>
E.C. Kirk and coauthors published a detailed study of the internal cranial anatomy of Rooneyia, a North American Eocene primate of uncertain phylogenetic affinities, in the Journal of Human Evolution. Their analysis suggests that Rooneyia is an advanced stem primate or a basal crown primate. Learn more by reading this updated DigiMorph account.  [more...] 
Acrotholus audeti, Pachycephalosaur2013-05-07 08:46:14
<i>Acrotholus audeti</i>, Pachycephalosaur
In the most recent issue of Nature Communications, Evans and coauthors describe a new taxon of pachycephalosaur, Acrotholus audeti, from the Santonian of Alberta, Canada. They argue that the diversity of small-bodied ornithischian dinosaurs is underestimated, and that taphonomic biases obfuscate the paleoecology and diversity of vertebrate taxa throughout the Mesozoic. Learn more about this new pachycephalosaur -- whose name means 'highest dome' -- by seeing CT imagery of the holotype specimen and reading the DigiMorph account.  [more...] 
A Nose by Any Other Name…2013-03-16 07:40:40
A Nose by Any Other Name…
A recent paper by Giannini and coauthors examines the internal nasal skeleton of Pteropus lylei, Lyle's flying fox, and compares it to that of other well-known mammals. Detailed study of such delicate, three-dimensionally complex structures was not possible prior to the advent of high-resolution X-ray computed tomography. These researchers found that homologies between these bones -- called turbinals -- are relatively easy to establish across taxa, and thus may be usefully employed in phylogenetic analyses.  [more...] 
Razorbill Auk, Alca torda2012-12-05 16:05:35
Razorbill Auk, <i>Alca torda</i>
Charadriiformes is a species-rich, morphologically diverse, and ecologically variable clade of birds, so one might expect that the sensory systems of these birds would be highly variable also. A recent paper by N.A. Smith and J. Clarke examined their endocranial cavity and inner ear morphology and found that the relatively conserved morphology of charadriiform inner ear labyrinths is in stark contrast to the highly variable morphology of their brains. Additionally, this new CT-based research represents the most dense taxon sampling for a comparative endocranial study within Aves to date, and the first attempt at phylogenetically contextualizing potential endocranial apomorphies of an avian subclade.  [more...] 
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