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VOA慢速英语:科学家在新西兰发现巨型企鹅骨头化石

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Scientists Find Bones from Giant Penguin in New Zealand

科学家在新西兰发现巨型企鹅骨头

Scientists in New Zealand have found fossilized leg bones from a penguin believed to have been about the size of an adult human.

新西兰科学家发现了被认为与成年人尺寸大小差不多的企鹅腿骨化石。

The previously undiscovered giant penguin species likely stood about 1.6 meters tall and weighed up to 80 kilograms.

这种之前未被发现的巨型企鹅物种站立起来可能有约1.6米高,80公斤重。

The penguin existed about 60 million years ago, researchers say. The bones are believed to be from the oldest of several species of giant penguins that lived after dinosaurs died out.

研究人员表示这只企鹅生存在约6000万年前。这些骨头被认为出自生活在恐龙灭绝之后时期的几个巨型企鹅物种中最古老的物种。

A fossil hunter found the bones last year in the Waipara River bed near the city of Christchurch. The bones are from the animal’s legs and feet.

一个化石的搜寻者去年在克赖斯特彻奇附近的怀帕拉河床上发现了这些骨头化石。这些骨头化石来自动物的腿和脚。

Scientists confirmed that the bones came from a newly discovered species. They recently reported their results in “Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology.”

科学家确认这些骨头来自新发现的物种。他们近期在《澳大拉西亚古生物学杂志》上报告了他们的发现结果。

Paul Scofield is senior curator at New Zealand’s Canterbury Museum. He co-wrote a paper on the discovery. He told the Associated Press that the bones are an important find. They show that the species is similar to another giant penguin found in Antarctica in 2000. The latest discovery, he said, helps show a clear connection between the two areas during the Paleocene period. This period lasted from 66 million to 56 million years ago.

保罗·斯科菲尔德在新西兰坎特伯雷博物馆担任资深馆长。他也共同参与写了关于此次发现的论文。他告诉美联社这些骨头化石是一次重要的发现。它们展示了这些物种与2000年在南极洲发现的另外一种巨型企鹅很相似。他表示这项最近的发现有助于展示在古新世时期两个地区存在很明显的联系。这段时期的间隔为从6600万年前一直到5600万年前。

Scofield said the penguins were able to grow larger after entering a new development period following the extinction of dinosaurs, sea reptiles and huge fish.

斯科菲尔德表示这些企鹅随着恐龙、海洋爬行动物和巨型鱼灭绝之后而进入一个新的发展阶段之后能够长得更大。

Scofield added that the giant penguins became extinct within 30 million years, as large mammals began to rule the waters.

斯科菲尔德补充道,随着巨型哺乳动物开始占领水域时,巨型企鹅在3000万年内灭绝了。

Ewan Fordyce is a paleontology professor from New Zealand’s University of Otago. He was not involved in the research. He told the AP the penguin was among the oldest ever found. He said one of the most difficult things for scientists making such discoveries is estimating the overall size of the birds based on pieces of bones.

尤恩·福代斯是新西兰奥塔哥大学的一名古生物学教授。他并没有参与此项研究。他告诉美联社说这只企鹅属于曾经发现的最古老的企鹅。他说对于有这种发现的科学家来说最困难的事之一便是根据几块骨头估计这些鸟全身的尺寸。

John Cockrem is a penguin expert at the country’s Massey University who was also not involved in the research. He said the discovery helps add to what we know about giant penguins. He said it also confirmed New Zealand as the penguin center of the world.

约翰·科克雷姆是新西兰梅西大学的一名企鹅专家。他也没有参与这项研究。他表示这项发现有助于增加我们对巨型企鹅现有的认识。他表示它也确认新西兰是世界企鹅的中心。

New Zealand is believed to have been home to many giant bird species that later disappeared. These included the world’s largest parrot, a giant eagle and an emu-like bird called the moa.

新西兰被认为是很多已经灭绝的大型鸟类的家园。这些鸟类包括世界上最大的鹦鹉、一种大型的鹰和一种跟鸸鹋很像名叫恐鸟的鸟。

Recently, Canterbury Museum announced the discovery of an unusually large parrot believed to have lived about 19 million years ago. Scientists say the bird stood about one meter tall.

近期坎特伯雷博物馆宣布发现的一种不寻常的大型的鹦鹉被认为生活在大约1900万年之前。科学家表示这种鸟站立起来约有1米高。

I’m Bryan Lynn.

布赖恩·林恩为您报道。

___________________________________________

Words in This Story

previously – adv. existing or happening before something else

species – n. a biological classification or grouping

curator – n. a person with responsibilities over a museum

extinction – n. when a type of animal no longer exists

Scientists Find Bones from Giant Penguin in New Zealand

Scientists in New Zealand have found fossilized leg bones from a penguin believed to have been about the size of an adult human.

The previously undiscovered giant penguin species likely stood about 1.6 meters tall and weighed up to 80 kilograms.

The penguin existed about 60 million years ago, researchers say. The bones are believed to be from the oldest of several species of giant penguins that lived after dinosaurs died out.

A fossil hunter found the bones last year in the Waipara River bed near the city of Christchurch. The bones are from the animal’s legs and feet.

Scientists confirmed that the bones came from a newly discovered species. They recently reported their results in “Alcheringa: An Australasian Journal of Palaeontology.”

Paul Scofield is senior curator at New Zealand’s Canterbury Museum. He co-wrote a paper on the discovery. He told the Associated Press that the bones are an important find. They show that the species is similar to another giant penguin found in Antarctica in 2000. The latest discovery, he said, helps show a clear connection between the two areas during the Paleocene period. This period lasted from 66 million to 56 million years ago.

Scofield said the penguins were able to grow larger after entering a new development period following the extinction of dinosaurs, sea reptiles and huge fish.

Scofield added that the giant penguins became extinct within 30 million years, as large mammals began to rule the waters.

Ewan Fordyce is a paleontology professor from New Zealand’s University of Otago. He was not involved in the research. He told the AP the penguin was among the oldest ever found. He said one of the most difficult things for scientists making such discoveries is estimating the overall size of the birds based on pieces of bones.

John Cockrem is a penguin expert at the country’s Massey University who was also not involved in the research. He said the discovery helps add to what we know about giant penguins. He said it also confirmed New Zealand as the penguin center of the world.

New Zealand is believed to have been home to many giant bird species that later disappeared. These included the world’s largest parrot, a giant eagle and an emu-like bird called the moa.

Recently, Canterbury Museum announced the discovery of an unusually large parrot believed to have lived about 19 million years ago. Scientists say the bird stood about one meter tall.

I’m Bryan Lynn.

___________________________________________

Words in This Story

previously – adv. existing or happening before something else

species – n. a biological classification or grouping

curator – n. a person with responsibilities over a museum

extinction – n. when a type of animal no longer exists


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