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Today, Wādī al-Ḥītān (the Valley of Whales) is in the middle of western egyptian desert, but once it was covered by the sea and was the home of this "crocodilesque" ancestor of modern whales, the Basilosaurus: a 49/59 feet long predator with 44 sharp, harpoon-like teeth. When the sea became to dry, whales were simply unable to escape.

History of Geology: March 23, 1769 William Smith - Pioneer of applied Geology

History of Geology: March 23, 1769 William Smith - Pioneer of applied Geology. Ammonites, characteristic fossils for the Mesozoic and the most appreciated fossils by Smith.

Baltic amber containing a small snake

Fossilized dinosaur eggs with babies inside!

This fossil specimen of a Jewel Beetle (family Buprestidae), found in Messel, Germany, still retains its iridescence. This is caused by a large number of microscopic reflectors still preserved in this prehistoric insect.

Brachiopods Fossil Picture GalleryBrachiopods (BRACK-yo-pods) are an ancient line of shellfish, first appearing in the earliest Cambrian rocks, that once ruled the seafloors.

dragonfly - 300 million years

Taponcalymene nodulosa

Brachiopods Fossil Picture GalleryBrachiopods (BRACK-yo-pods) are an ancient line of shellfish, first appearing in the earliest Cambrian rocks, that once ruled the seafloors.

Giant Ammonite, Lyme Regis by blinkingidiot, via Flickr

Giant insects disappeared thanks to falling oxygen levels and agile birds. "The largest wings of any living insect belong to the Queen Alexandra birdwing butterfly and the atlas moth. They can span 10 to 12 inches across. But even these giants are puny compared to the insects of prehistory. Meganeura, for example, was a dragonfly that lived 300 million years ago and each of its wings was the length of my arm. Why do such behemoths no longer exist?"

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Three-day-old embryos of red-eyed treefrog species Agalychnis callidryas. The embryos have external gills that protrude toward the surface of their eggs, where oxygen is most concentrated. This adaptation allows for high metabolic rates and accelerated development. Karen M. Warkentin

Heterochromia - a beautiful mutation of the iris.