3D reconstruction of the tetrapod skull. Top image: Right facial skeleton and skull roof shown in "exploded" view to show how the bones fit together. Center image: Left side of the cranium (braincase omitted) is shown in internal view. Bottom image: Right lower jaw in "exploded" view to illustrate sutural morphology. Individual bones shown in various colors. (Porro et al.) Biology Paleontology 

Early Tetrapod Skull Looks like Crocodile

Our 360 million-year-old tetrapod ancestors may have been more like modern crocodiles than previously thought, according to a new 3D skull reconstruction from the University of Bristol, UK. Acanthostega gunnari was a “four-footed” vertebrate, also known as a tetrapod, that invaded land during one of the great evolutionary transitions in Earth’s history, 380-360 million years ago. Tetrapods evolved from lobe-finned fish and display a number of adaptations that helped them survive on land. “These new analyses provide fresh clues about the evolution of the jaws and feeding system as the…

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