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Frans_Jozef
Friday, February 24th, 2006, 01:12 AM
Fossil Overturns Ideas of Jurassic Mammals

By RANDOLPH E. SCHMID







The discovery of a furry, beaver-like animal that lived at the time of dinosaurs has overturned more than a century of scientific thinking about Jurassic mammals.


The find shows that the ecological role of mammals in the time of dinosaurs was far greater than previously thought, said Zhe-Xi Luo, curator of vertebrate paleontology at Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh.


The animal is the earliest swimming mammal to have been found and was the most primitive mammal to be preserved with fur, which is important to helping keep a constant body temperature, Luo said in a telephone interview.


link (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060223/ap_on_sc/jurassic_beaver_3;_ylt=AgIzBl58DolpYHVo6 zmMsKhxieAA;_ylu=X3oDMTA2ZGZwam4yBHNlYwN mYw--)