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Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Marker Says "Horse"

Horse Paleontology at the San Diego Zoo San Diego, California ~ November 5, 2009

Zoos are no longer just about showing off captive animals, but the better ones are about conservation and also about education. Near the elephants is a display of Pleistocene paleontology, and one of the outdoor displays features this model horse skull, intended to appear as it might have been buried in the earth. Here the horse has been used as an example, and it's a good choice. The horse is one of the animals whose evolution is well known thanks to several circumstances. Horses lived in herds on fairly dry plains, and conditions were right throughout most of their long history for fossils to be created from their skeletons. Animals such as the tapir, which lived singly or in smaller groups and died in areas where decay was faster and the earth less ready to preserve the remains, have left less for scientists to study.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store

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