Welcome to Superoceras, a blog about science and natural history, slightly biased towards paleontology and zoology, but inclusive of all sciences. Started in October of 2009, my goal is to communicate scientific knowledge (and the occasional piece of nonsense) in an informative and entertaining manner. Feel free to contact me with questions, comments, concerns, or criticism at superoceras(at)gmail(dot)com, and follow me on Twitter @Superoceras for all that and more in 140 characters or less!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

SVP 2010 (Day1): Dinos Galore!

Today, I'm coming to you live from SVP. The 70th Annual Meeting looks like its going to be a good one. Now I'm going to be perfectly honest with you; after reading the SVP embargo policy online, I had thought I'd be able to do some decent write ups of what I was seeing and hearing here during the meeting. But after taking a look at an actual press kit (particularly the line in the policy mentioning pending publications in other journals, and their individual policies), I think I'm going to have to leave you all hanging a little bit . I certainly don't want to step on any toes, and I have the utmost respect for the individuals in this field. All of the talks I've seen have been amazing, and while I'd love to tell you all about them in great detail, perhaps I should let the authors/presenters do that when they actually get published. And rest assured, when these papers hit the press, I will be updating here, and linking to all of them.

So that being said, today, I spent the majority of my time in Technical Session I. Lots of dinosaur talks. I'll admit, my paleontological interests are varied, but I'll always have a soft spot for the "terrible lizards" My childhood obsession with dinosaurs is what started my interest in science. Speaking of science, let's get back to (vaguely talking about) the presentations. This session focused primarily on the ornithischian dinosaurs, their evolution, life histories, body temperature, feeding behavior, and nocturnality. Interesting hypothesis of the day: the "fighting dinosaurs" may have been crepuscular. Awesome. Be on the look out for a paper from Montani and Schmitz about that one.

Topics were also inclusive of many different dinosaur clades. Hadrosaurs and pachycephalosaurs were well represented, but the ceratopsians really stole the show. It has been a banner year for ceratopsians, with several new species named (and perhaps one "un-named"), and the publication of some great new texts. The "mini ceratopsian symposium" that closed Technical Session I was excellent, and I'm really looking forward to seeing some of these papers hit the press. But for now, I'll leave you wanting more. I'll check back in after the second session for a roundup, where I'll most likely be moving from the Mesozoic to the Cenozoic with some mammal info.

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