Just got a second NEW 3DS XL since my old NEW 3DS XL was starting to lose functionality in the D-Pad and the X-Button. Now I have two 3DS' and am able to do my Poke'mon Trading on my own as well as practice with my Battle Teams without worrying about my poor internet connection!
Stegosaurus is definitely one of the most recognizable dinosaurs ever. In fact, Stegosaurus is so popular it has been featured in various films, cartoons, books, toys, postal stamps, and was even declared the state dinosaur of Colorado in 1982.
The most noticeable feature of this dinosaur are its dermal plates, which consisted of 17 to 22 separate plates. These plates were in fact highly modified osteoderms, similar to the ones seen in many other animals such as modern crocodiles and some lizards. Osteoderms are connected to the skin and not the skeleton. Stegosaurus's largest plates could grow up to 60cm tall and wide. The main purpose of these plates were most likely for display or possibly thermoregulation. Stegosaurus is also equipped with four long spikes at the end of its tail, known as a thagomizer. These lethal spikes would have been used to fight off hungry, late Jurassic predators.
Planet Master is an idle game created by MistGame for the Google Play Store.
In this game you journey throughout the universe to liberate the planets from a mysteriously labeled "Them"
With each planet comes the female personification of that planet who will accompany you along the way as shown here with earth:
The game has an interesting and unique art style, representing each of the Women as unique and individual from one another. Not only in looks, but if you click the "eye" icon located just above the "Level Up" button then they will join you on the main screen to provide little tidbits of information about themselves and the universe as seen below:
The game begins with you first meeting/saving Earth from "Them". She is the first planet you will unlock and you can earn resources(crystals) by tapping on the Earth. Before long, you'll have saved enough to "contract" the girl herself to provide resources for you!
The game progresses from there, with you slowly unlocking planets and contracting the Planetary Girls. As you level the planets and the respective Women for the planet, the resources provided increase.
As you play a few other things are occuring:
As you can see, ships are flying by! Along with idling you can destroy ships sent by "Them" to gain resources. Shipwrecks can also be repaired to provided a 30 Second increase to production value for every planet.
You may also have noticed the two counters at the top, the Polkacoins and Cubes. These are the Premium currencies of the game, both of which can be earned simply by playing and completing Daily Quests:
There are seven total daily quests that reward Cubes and one daily quest that rewards Polkacoins. Cubes can also be earned by destroying Battleships - special, larger ships that start to appear after G3 - and Polkacoins can be earned by destroying the Mothership after G5.
Polkacoins are mainly used to buy cosmetic outfits (as you can see in the image showing Earth) or more Cubes which can be used to do a variety of things, such as refilling the ammo for your gun, providing a temporary boost for your planets, or unlocking unique, permanent Girls like Black Hole shown below:
Women unlocked using Cubes are permanent and do not go away after a (soft) reset.
Like many other idle games, you earn a unique currency while you play that can only be redeemed by resetting your entire Galaxy(or by spending Cubes). This currency is called "Gas" as is the last counter below Cubes.
Gas can be used in a variety of ways after resetting. One such way is to increase Planetary Earnings, Gas Earned Upon Reset or to decrease the time it takes a planet to produce resources (Shown below in order):
Or to improve or modify your weapon shown here:
All-in-all, it is an extremely fun game and one I would highly recommend for anyone who enjoys idle games. It has an interesting play style, unique and enjoyable graphics and an amazing Developer behind it.
Speaking of, MistGame is a rather fantastic Developer. They are highly responsive to not only emails, but also to comments on their Facebook Page and reply to (almost) every Google Play review.
There are currently a few bugs in the game still, such as Daily Quests resetting twice and becoming unobtainable, but Mist has done a fantastic job communicating with the community (and compensating them) about the issue and are looking in to fixing it as fast as possible.
I would give this game a solid 10/10 as it's one of the idle games that has drawn me in and kept me captivated. It also does a great job of providing players with Premium Currency and only seems to have one hard wall (G5 to S1) that makes you feel like you need to pay to progress, but as a free-to-play player myself, I can assure you that you do not.
Not that I wouldn't mind supporting this amazing Developer though :)
The evolutionary history of the horse goes back tens of millions of million years, to a time not long after the dinosaur extinction... First, we'll discuss Eohippus, an animal that was only the size of a small dog. Eohippus' features include a short head and neck with an arched back. The teeth of this animal were mostly used for grinding foliage and fruits on the forest floor in which they lived. At this time the horse ancestry had 5 toes on their forelimbs; four of the toes were equipped with small proto-hooves while the hind legs had hooves on 3/5 of the toes. The feet of Eohippus were also padded --much like dog or cat's feet. To some it is surprising that the large and noble horses today could trace their family tree back to an animal such as Eohippus.
As many stages of evolution progressed animals such as Miohippus appeared in North America as the first, primitive grasses began to evolve. The environment began changing from forests to prairies and the horses grew larger with longer legs and stronger teeth. By this time Miohippus walked on 3 hooved toes.
Merychippus appeared during the midst of the Miocene epoch. This animal had wide molars for eating tough grasses. The hind legs had shorter side toes that would've rarely touched the ground.
Jump ahead a few million years and we find ourselves smack dab in the Miocene epoch. Pliohippus would have been a fast running animal that was very similar to the present day Equus, but despite being a close relative of Equus, some features just simply did not add up. Pliohippus wasn't the direct ancestor to modern horses.
And finally we reach the latest; Equus. This final genus includes horses, donkeys, and zebras. In modern times some equines have coexisted with humans in symbiotic relationships for millennia now and was completely domesticated by ~3000 BC.
The Carboniferous period is famous for its ginormous terrestrial invertebrates. The reason for this is that the Earth's atmosphere had the highest oxygen levels in geological history. An astounding 35% compared to 21% today. Some of the gigantic inhabitants include: More on the Carboniferous Period here.
Arthropluera -Length: 2.6m (larger species) -Width: up to 50cm -Range: Scotland & northeastern N. America Many fossilized tracks have been discovered created by this mega arthropod. Some tracks even showed Arthropluera moving around trees and rocks as it made its way through the prehistoric forests. It was once uncertain whether Arthropluera was carnivorous or herbivorous, but when analyzing the digestive tract scientists found spores from plants similar to ferns -- suggesting Arthropluera was a herbivore.
Meganeura -Wingspan: 75cm -Range: Western Europe "Meganeura" (large-nerved) is a Carboniferous insect that resemble and are also related to modern dragonflies. These hawk-sized insects were carnivorous and thanks to their large size they had a larger menu. Other insects and invertebrates, small amphibians, and early reptiles were all at risk of being devoured.
Pulmonoscorpius -Length: 70cm -Range: Scotland, West Lothian, East Kirkton Being a scorpion and all, Pulmonoscorpius was most likely a carnivore. Although Pulmonoscorpius had relatively small pincers so perhaps it fed on smaller organisms or that this arthropod simply relied more on its venom to kill prey.
Einiosaurus was a medium-sized centrosaurine ceratopsian from the Cretaceous period and was discovered in Montana. Einiosaurus appears to be an example of an intermediate position on the evolutionary line of the centrosaurines. The most noticeable feature of Einiosaurus was its nasal horn which strongly curved forward and down, however, this characteristic may only occur in some adult individuals.
The discovery of Einiosaurus made scientists further question whether or not the horns and frills of ceratopsians were used for defense. Einiosaurus' nasal horn was pointed downward, a position where the horn would be of little use when fighting off a hungry predator. Other evidence to support that ceratopsian horns/frills weren't used for defense includes: -As juveniles, ceratopsians only possessed rudimentary horns & frills; a time when they were most vulnerable. -Each species of ceratopsians had a unique set of horns and frills. If they were used for defensive, surely evolution would've standardized the design.
With that said it does not mean the horns and frill were never used for defense, just perhaps not as the primary purpose in some species.
Macrauchenia -- the "long llama". The oldest fossils dated back approximately 7 million years ago in South America during the Miocene epoch and the last species disappeared from the fossil record during the late Pleistocene roughly 20,000-10,000 years ago. This animal possessed a camel-like body, long neck, stable legs, and a small head. Macrauchenia's feet resembled those of a modern rhinoceros with three hooves each. Despite the animal's relatively large size, Macrauchenia was able to rapidly change direction while running at high speeds to avoid predators. Macrauchenia was a perfect prehistoric hybrid, but its most noticeable feature was its small trunk or highly developed prehensile upper lip much like an elephant or tapir. Yet, Macrauchenia, being a litoptern was unrelated to all of these animals.
Thanks to carbon isotope analysis of teeth enamel from Macrauchenia told scientists that this bizarre animal was capable of eating plants and grasses. The trunk/prehensile lip would assist when it came to stripping leaves and branches from shrubs while the high crown teeth was used for chewing the grasses. Macrauchenia could have been the last of the litoptern mammals. The event known as the Great American Interchange really tested Macrauchenia's survival. With the birth of the Isthmus of Panama a land bridge was formed connecting the North and South American continents. New herbivores from the north competed with Macrauchenia for food and new carnivores such as saber-toothed cats and wolves began hunting the queer litopterns. On top of that, the arrival of humans in South America and the changing climates eventually pushed Macrauchenia into extinction.
Two warriors dueled upon the battle ground, Their arms scattering bright sparks and blood; above This sport, the clash of steel gave forth the sound Of youth fallen a prey to puling love.
The blades are broken, darling, like the moon Of our sweet youth! but teeth and fingernails Avenge the sword and traitorous dagger soon. Old hearts that love's old bitterness assails!
In the ravine where lynx and panther ramble, Our heroes bite the dust in fierce embrace, Their skin shall bring new bloom to the dry bramble. This pit is hell, our friends' choice dwelling place! Let us roll there, O cruel Amazon, So our fierce hatred may live on and on!
I am sure you have all heard of this one. Does the title "Biggest predatory shark in history" ring a bell?
The teeth are by far the most abundant when it comes to the preservation of this animal. The larger teeth can reach approximately 18 centimeters in height. In fact, it wasn't until 1667 that these structures were realized to be shark teeth, before then it was widely believed that they were petrified dragon tongues. Teeth are most commonly found, but over time more and more vertebrae have been discovered. And when it comes to general shark biology the shark's skeleton is composed of 'soft' cartilage, but the vertebrae are made up of calcified cartilage. This type of cartilage was harder and took longer to decompose and had a better chance at becoming fossilized. Thanks to the surplus amount of C. megalodon teeth and limited vertebrae paleontologists know that C. megalodon was big, but how big is the question? Through various methods scientists have estimated C. megalodon to be 15-16 meters long. Larger estimates put it at 17 meters while some theorize a colossal length of 20 meters (however, this estimation is mere speculation). A more modest size of 15m still meant that C. megalodon easily dwarfed all other predatory sharks to ever live. Now we go onto weight estimations... These weights are estimated when compared to great white sharks. Weight Estimations -At 16m = ~47 metric tons -At 17m = ~59 metric tons -At 20m = ~103 metric tons Megalodon's large size meant it needed large food (not dinosaurs. C. megalodon first appeared at the end of the Oligocene; long after the extinction of the dinosaurs). It appears that adults preferred to hunt small to medium sized whales. Evidence from cetacean vertebrae indicate that C. megalodon shared the same classic hunting method as the great white sharks do today -- striking from below to prevent self injury and land a potential fatal hit on the prey item.
C. megalodon seemed like the perfect predator, but yet it went extinct during the beginning stages of the Pleistocene. At this time of Earth's history, global cooling began rising at an alarming rate. As more water solidified into ice at the poles global sea levels dropped -- creating the Isthmus of Panama. The Isthmus of Panama closed the Central American Seaway which was a key migration route for whales. Without being able to migrate and reproduce whale numbers began to drop. Some whales such as Baleen whales were still able to migrate up into the polar regions thanks to their blubber; a place where C. megalodon could not follow. During this time the majority of whale genera disappeared and to this day only 1 toothed whale was able to survive; the sperm whale. With limited food C. megalodon was in for some trouble, not to mention that C. megalodon itself had a some of its nurseries disrupted by either the creation of the Isthmus of Panama or cooling temperatures. A final theory is that as more predaceous delphinids (represented by the modern Orca aka Killer Whale) appeared the numbers of C. megalodon declined. Which is true, but it is uncertain whether the delphinids caused the shark's population to drop or the shark's dropping population allowed more delphinids to appear.
But is C. megalodon really extinct? Some have theorized that this great shark is still alive in the oceans today, but scientists say otherwise...
(The jaws of a great white compare to C. megalodon.)
Mammoths and mastodons may have roamed the Earth together, but each animal represents two different branches of the Proboscidean family.
Mammoths belongs to the Mammuthus genus that first appeared roughly 5 million years ago in Africa and as time progressed they migrated up into Eurasia and then into North America. The most famous of all was Mammuthus primigenius (the Woolly Mammoth) which appeared ~250,000 years ago. Mammoths went extinct approximately 10,000 years ago. However, it's plausible that a population of dwarfs survived on an isolated island off the northeastern coast of Siberia until about 3,500 years ago. Mammoths and modern elephants are closely related and are a part of same family (Elephantidae). Mastodons, however, appeared much earlier -- about 30 million years ago. They primarily inhabited North and Central America and disappeared between 12,000-10,000 years ago.
-The two animals were similar in size and build, but mastodons were slightly smaller with shorter legs and lower, flatter skulls. -Mammoths had a hump on their backs that stored fats and nutrients reserved for harsher times. -The most noticeable difference were their teeth... Mastodons had cone-shaped cusps on the molars which were designed to crush leaves, twigs, and branches. Mammoths had ridged molars that allowed them to cut grass and graze like elephants do today.
This was the first pterosaur to be discovered in South America. Pterodaustro's jaws were long and narrow that curved upward in a bow-like shape. There were no teeth on the bottom jaw, but instead Pterodaustro possessed up to 500 elastic bristles. The top jaw perfectly fits within the bristles when the mouth is closed. Short blunt teeth also lined the upper jaw that could have been used to scrap food from the bristles and into the mouth.
Pterodaustro would've have fed upon tiny invertebrates much like flamingos today. It has even been suggested that Pterodaustro's hair-like filaments known as pycnofibres were pink in color -- an alteration in pigments due to their crustacean diet just like the plumage of a flamingo. However, this is mere speculation.
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One of the most distinctive of all hadrosaurs, Parasaurolophus was not only popular but it was also quite beautiful. The most stand-out feature on this dinosaur was its crest. This crest could've been used for display purposes to attract mates or maybe in order to recognize other individuals of the same species. The crest is also widely viewed to be used for auditory communication. The crest housed tubes that ran up the skull to the tip where they curved round and back down the skull. The calls produced by the throat travel through the passages where they are amplified by the crest so they are louder with a broader frequency. Each species would produce different calls thanks to their unique crests. Current Parasaurolophus species include: P. walkeri P. tubicen P. cyrtocristatus
Mummified remains of an 18-foot long dinosaur emerged from a mine in Canada. For the past five years researchers have spent over 7,000 hours chiseling away at the rock that encased the animal. There are no visible bones because the skeleton is covered with fossilized skin; even some gut content is still intact. It was a nodosaur that lived 110 million years ago. The death of this land-dwelling herbivore is still a mystery, but somehow it ended up at the bottom of an ancient sea which is why the animal is so well preserved.
The fossil was put on display at the Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology in Alberta, Canada.
Modern whales are amongst the largest animals to ever live on Earth. But where did these gigantic mammals come from? Well I'll tell you. Whales evolved from small terrestrial mammals that lived in the Eocene period such as Pakicetus. Pakicetus looked like the typical land animal and didn't have any whale-like features, however, their ears strongly resemble living whales and are unlike those of other mammals. Pakicetus is often regarded as the most basal whale.
As millions of years of evolution go by animals such as Ambulocetus appeared. They had shorter legs and larger, paddle-like feet. Recovered from sediments comprised of a prehistoric estuary as well as isotopes of oxygen in the bones are evidence for Ambulocetus' semi-aquatic lifestyle.
Beyond that more modernized whales showed higher levels of saltwater oxygen isotopes -- indicating ocean habitats. The nostrils gradually were positioned further back on the snout. This trend would continue into modern whales as "blowholes". As the aquatic whales continued to evolve their pelvis' reduced in size and separated from the spine. Dolphins and whales today have horizontal tail flukes and swim by undulating up and down (unlike fish who have vertical caudal fins and undulate side to side while swimming) -- revealing a terrestrial heritage. But evolution does not stop there. The front limbs transitioned into durable flippers used for steering and swimming and the hind legs slowly began to disappear. By around 40mya whales like Dorudon and Basilosaurus appeared and the puny reminiscent of hind limbs are still visible. These vestigial appendages are more evidence to support the whale's terrestrial ancestry.
Fun Fact: Hippos are the closest living relatives of whales, but they are not the ancestors!