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Bronze statuette intended to contain a mummified cat (Ptolemaic period, 332–30 B.C.) (photo: Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1956)
19/06/2017

Domestication of the Cat: Ancient DNA Reveals Significant Role of the Near East and Egypt

post by
Reinout Verbeke

DNA found at archaeological sites reveals that the origins of our domestic cat are in the Near East and ancient Egypt. Cats were domesticated by the first farmers some 10,000 years ago. They later spread across Europe and other parts of the world via trade hub Egypt.

Myotis (CC Manuel Ruedi)
09/06/2017

Belgian Discovery: Popular Bat Genus Is Millions of Years Older Than Thought

post by
Jonas Van Boxel

Our palaeontologists have found the oldest fossil of the extant bat genus Myotis (mouse-eared bat). This proves that the widespread genus has existed at least 7 million years earlier than previously assumed.

Life holotype of Pristimantis boucephalus sp. nov. in dorsal view. (Photo: Edgar Lehr)
01/06/2017

EJT: 1000 species and beyond!

post by
Reinout Verbeke

European Journal of Taxonomy, co-founded by our Institute, is thrilled to announce the publication of the journal’s 1000th new species.

Two Mystacodon selenensis individuals diving down to catch eagle rays along the seafloor of a shallow cove off the coast of present-day Peru. CREDIT Alberto Gennari.
11/05/2017

Baleen Whales’ Ancestors Were Toothy Suction Feeders

post by
Reinout Verbeke

Modern whales’ ancestors probably hunted and chased down prey, but somehow, those fish-eating hunters evolved into filter-feeding leviathans.

An adult Falcon nourishing the three chicks (photo: RBINS)
06/04/2017

Falcons for Everyone 2017: Live Streaming of 3 Nests

post by
Reinout Verbeke

Falcons for Everyone is back and bigger than ever! This spring, you can live stream the daily life of 3 falcon families in Brussels, from the hatching of the eggs to the first flight of the young falcons.

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