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Life sciences/Evolutionary biology/Evolution/Adaptive evolution

For the first time, two of this year’s 15 fellows will work at Spanish-language news outlets.

The frosty highlands of the Tibetan Plateau may have been an evolutionary cradle for woolly rhinos and other shaggy, cold-hardy creatures that roamed North America and Eurasia during the last Ice Age, according to a new study in Science.

The 2 September report describes fossils from an ancient species of woolly rhino that was roaming the Zanda Basin on the Tibetan Plateau 3.7 million years ago, sweeping snow out of its way with an elongated face and massive nasal horn.

The fossil feathers of a 36 million year-old penguin give clues to some of its modern features, a new Science study reports.

“Before this fossil, we had no evidence about the feathers, colors and flipper shapes of ancient penguins. We had questions and this was our first chance to start answering them,” said Julia Clarke, lead author and paleontologist at The University of Texas at Austin.