After some research into the surprisingly obscure role of the ammonite aptychus and some very helpful feedback from Robert Lemanis. So, apparently, aptychus are homologous to the lower beak in squids and octopuses. In ammonites, they are suspiciously similar in size and shape to the shell opening on ammonites they’ve been found with. The vision of a creature pushing it’s jaw out and up over it’s head made me think of a cute little grandma playing with her dentures, and so I began to call it the grandma hypothesis. I know not everyone will like this interpretation of it’s function, but it should have at least one animated representation out there I think, and it definitely sets ammonites apart from nautiloids. So, we’ll see how the animation ends up looking…
I’ll also try to get a full list of references for this reconstruction up, but for the most part, it’s Christian Klug and researchers he’s worked with.
Martin Baeker writes about Gerrothorax skull mechanics over at his highly recommended, German-language blog Hier wohnen Drachen. He also includes an image I made… the one that’s torso is too short. Ahem. A great article about the novel skull mechanics, in which the skull is more mobile than the jaw.
Science-art interface, anybody? Really cool tracking and visualization platform for dance, which is but a skip, hop and pirouette away from expressive biomechanics. I can imagine the visualization options presented in this toolkit to be of use in scientific analysis. Click to go.
Twas windy… damned windy… and in gusts from all sides. This gull just makes it look so easy to hang in the air.
I stabilized the video at approximately the skull base to better appreciate the subtle adjustments. This is how I hope to slide through the new year.
Seaside Romp, 1990: James Gurney revels in mammalian trots. More for future reference than anything else.