By Tyrone Burke
Photos by Chris Roussakis
Hell hunter and devil digger. When Arjan Mann names a species, he doesn’t mess around.
As part of his PhD research into carboniferous period creatures, the Carleton Earth Sciences student identified two new species. The two species date from about 310 million years ago, when the ancestors of modern reptiles, birds and mammals were moving permanently on to land.
The first he named Diabloroter — devil digger. Mann studied the specimen at the Field Museum in Chicago, where it had been preserved in a devilishly red latex peel. Its hard skull is similar in structure to modern animals that burrow, digging into the earth by compacting soil with their heads.
The second of the two creatures was an elongated, short-limbed animal that would have moved by sidewinding — much like a modern snake. He called it Infernovenator (hell hunter) to stick with the hellish theme.
Known as recumbirostrans — or colloquially as microsaurs — the two creatures were preserved in the Francis Creek Shale at Mazon Creek, Illinois. The site is about a 90-minute drive south of Chicago and has been attracting palaeontologists and collectors since the early 1900s. A boom in private collecting that began in the 1960s depleted it of its most obvious specimens and palaeontologists moved along to more productive locations.
More News Posts
Seeing the Unseen: Free Film Screening
Carleton students are invited to the free screening of "Seeing the Unseen" an Icelandic film with English subtitles about autistic women. Supported by the Faculty of Public Affairs, Carleton’s School... More
GINS 3300B Course Taught Abroad
In May 2020, the Global and International Studies Program will be organizing a Carleton Course Abroad entitled “Radical Embodiment in the Swiss and French Alps, 1816-1916,” taught by Marsha Barsky.... More
We're here to help you succeed!
Use our services search to explore our many support services.