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Whales lost their teeth before evolving hair-like baleen in their mouths: Newly described fossil whale in museum collections reveals a surprising intermediate step in their evolution

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Whales lost their teeth before evolving hair-like baleen in their mouths: Newly described fossil whale in museum collections reveals a surprising intermediate step in their evolution
Rivaling the evolution of feathers in dinosaurs, one of the most extraordinary transformations in the history of life was the evolution of baleen -- rows of flexible hair-like plates that blue whales, humpbacks and other marine mammals use to filter relatively tiny prey from gulps of ocean water. Now, scientists have discovered an important intermediary link in the evolution of this innovative feeding strategy: an ancient whale that had neither teeth nor baleen.
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