Dimetrodon Is Canadian!

In 1854, a fossil was found on Prince Edward Island by a farmer. It was part of an upper jaw with curved teeth. It was given the name Bathygnathus borealis. The 290 million year old Permian period reptile couldn’t be identified, and it wasn’t linked to other species that are now known. However, looking at the fossil again, scientists discovered that it’s actually a Dimetrodon.

Dimetrodon incisivum at the Museum of Natural History in the United States.
Dimetrodon incisivum at the Museum of Natural History in the United States.

The Dimetrodon is a famous sail-backed reptile that predates the dinosaurs. They are not related to dinosaurs, but are in fact more closely related to mammals. They come from a group of reptiles called non-mammalian synapsids. While they aren’t our ancestors, another reptile from that group is our direct ancestor.

I find this pretty interesting. Dimetrodons had never been found in Canada before, so it’s nice to add such a famous animal to the list of prehistoric animals that lived in Canada. What do you think of this news?

Duolingo Language Test Drive to Begin

I’ve finally decided to get that language test drive started. I’m going to start off with a couple languages I’ve already taken a look at, then move on from those.

First up is Irish. I can already say that the grammar is different than English. Second will be Esperanto. It’s an easy language, but it isn’t spoken by any particular country. Following them, I’ll work my way through the available languages and post my impressions after I’ve done five language lessons. Ukrainian and Russian have alphabet (Cyrillic) lessons, which I’ll go through first, then do five language lessons.

This is the order I’m going to do them in:

  1. Irish
  2. Esperanto
  3. Norwegian
  4. Italian
  5. Dutch
  6. Portuguese
  7. Swedish
  8. Danish
  9. Turkish
  10. Ukrainian
  11. Russian

Ukrainian has the better Cyrillic lessons than Russian, so I’ll do that first. Turkish is supposed to be quite difficult, so I’ll leave it until later, as well.

There are other languages that will be available soon, including Polish. Once I get far enough along with Spanish, I can try Catalan from Spanish.

Which ones are you looking forward to hearing about?