Tag Archives: Vintana sertichi

This Scientist is OK- Dr. Anne Weil

Dr. Anne Weil is a vertebrate paleontologist at the OSU Center for Health Sciences in Tulsa. Her specialty is looking at a “lost branch of mammalia” called multituberculates. They lived roughly 180 to 30 million years ago. Here’s an example.

She started college wanting to be a novelist but soon found herself taking geology and paleontology courses. Next thing you know she’s paleontologist researching fossilized mammal teeth.

She’s an OK scientist.

Mammals are Older Than We Thought

(Image credit: Joseph Groenke, Stony Brook University; Sculpture credit: Gary Staab, Staab studios)

A newly discovered fossil has pushed back the age of mammals by about 200-million years.

A newly discovered fossil has pushed back the age of mammals to about 200 million years. (Thanks to Dr. Anne Weil for the correction.)

Mammals and dinosaurs walked the planet at the same time, it’s just that mammals were tiny…like the size of a mouse or shrew. Scientists from Stony Brook University in New York recently made a discovery in Madagascar that not only shows some mammals were bigger than previously thought but that mammals have been around much longer than we realized.

The mammal is called Vintana sertichi. It weighed about 20 pounds and lived around 66-70 million years ago. Tulsa based paleontologist Dr. Anne Weil wrote about the groundhog sized animal for Nature Magazine. (It’s behind a paywall but if you’re so inclined…) She told me the discovery is “supercool”. She says it solves a longstanding mystery about the evolution of mammals and just how long they’ve been on Earth.

Check out the video below Courtesy of Stony Brook University