Ovibos moschatus.,The Musk Ox, named for the musky odor emitted by the males of this species, once ranged over much of Asia and North America. Now this prehistoric left-over is mainly inhabits regions of the arctic within Canada and Greenland. Historically, and before being hunted to extirpation, Alaska also supported populations of Musk Ox. Although a member of the Bovidae family, the Musk Ox is not a true "ox" but are more closely related to sheep. This gregarious (herd-dwelling) species grazes on grasses, reeds, sedges, and other arctic ground plants. Musk Ox, when threatened, will form a circle around the herd's young. With their stocky build and massive horns as a primary ring of defense, there are few predators capable of preying on this species.
*Specifications: CLASS: Mammalia ORDER: Artiodactyla FAMILY: Bovidae Origin: North America
* Skull Replica Length: 45 cm (17.7 in) Average Horn Length: 60 cm (23.6 in)
Archaeopteryx lithographica.,Archaeopteryx, sometimes referred to by its German name Urvogel ("original bird" or "first bird"), is the earliest and most primitive bird known. The name is from the Ancient Greek meaning "feather" or "wing". Archaeopteryx lived in the late Jurassic Period around 150–145 million years ago, in what is now southern Germany during a time when Europe was an archipelago of islands in a shallow warm tropical sea, much closer to the equator than it is now. Similar in size and shape to a European Magpie, Archaeopteryx could grow to about 0.5 metres (1.6 ft) in length. Despite its small size, broad wings, and inferred ability to fly or glide, Archaeopteryx has more in common with small theropod dinosaurs than it does with modern birds. In particular, it shares the following features with the deinonychosaurs (dromaeosaurs and troodontids): jaws with sharp teeth, three fingers with claws, a long bony tail, hyperextensible second toes ("killing claw"), feathers (which also suggest homeothermy), and various skeletal features. The features above make Archaeopteryx the first clear candidate for a transitional fossil between dinosaurs and birds. The first complete specimen of Archaeopteryx was announced in 1861, only two years after Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species, and it became a key piece of evidence in the debate over evolution.
*Specifications: CLASS: Aves ORDER: Archaeopterygiformes FAMILY: Archaeopterygidae Origin: Solnhofen, Germany *
Skull Length: 5 cm (2.0 in)
Aptenodytes patagonica.The king penguin, reaching nearly 3 feet tall, is second only to the emperor penguin in size. This large flightless bird nests in colonies up to 10,000 individuals. The king penguins range includes Antarctica, the Falkland Islands, Tierra del Fuego, and many other islands throughout the sub-Antarctic. The king penguin feeds on fish, but specializes in eating squid.
CLASS: Aves ORDER: Sphenisciformes. FAMILY: Spheniscidae
Origin: Antarctica Diet: Carnivore
Skull Length: 7.6 in.
The first Australopithecus boisei specimen, originally named Zinjanthropus boisei, was discovered in 1959 by Mary Leaky at the Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania, Africa. A. boisei skulls have been found in Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Kenya.
* Skull Length: 22.5 cm (8.9 in)
Cro-Magnons are recognized as the earliest know race of modern humans, Homo sapiens. Generally considered the earliest European descendants, Cro-Magnons lived between 10,000 and 35,000 years ago. The first Cro-Magnon specimens were discovered in France in 1868 along with many sophisticated tools, artifacts and cave paintings. Cro-Magnons are credited with creating the first calendar nearly 34,000 years ago.
*Skull Length: 20 cm (7.9 in)
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