Please welcome the latest member of the growing club of flying dinosaurs, Changyuraptor yangi, pictured here in an artist’s reconstruction. This latest specimen, found in 125-million-year-old sediments in northeastern China, was about 1.2 meters long and is related to a noted group of flying dinosaurs called Microraptor, which has provided important insights into the evolution of powered flight. Like Microraptor, the new specimen had feathers on all four limbs; but its feathery tail, which takes up about 30% of its total length, is the longest known among flying dinosaurs. Changyuraptor, described online today in Nature Communications, weighed 4 kilograms, making it among the heaviest flying dinosaurs known. As for its long tail, the dino probably used it to slow itself down when descending, thus avoiding crash landings.
Carlos Delgado/Wikipedia; Matthias Ripp/Flickr Noncancerous tumors of the uterus—also known as fibroids—are extremely common in women. One risk factor, according to the scientific literature, is “black race.” But such simplistic categories may actually obscure the real drivers of the disparities in outcomes for women with fibroids, according to this week’s guest. Host Meagan Cantwell speaks with Jada Benn Torres, an associate professor of anthropology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, about how using interdisciplinary approaches— incorporating both genetic and cultural perspectives—can paint a more complete picture of how race shapes our understanding of diseases and how they are treated.In our monthly books segment, book review editor Valerie Thompson talks with David Rothenberg, author of the book Nightingales in Berlin: Searching for the Perfect Sound, about spending time with birds, whales, and neuroscientists trying to understand the aesthetics of human and animal music.This week’s episode was edited by Podigy.Download the transcript (PDF)Listen to previous podcasts.About the Science Podcast[Image: Carlos Delgado/Wikipedia; Matthias Ripp/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]