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Evolution in Deep Time & Life in Modern Times on Madagascar

Jan 22, 2023

In honor of Darwin Day, coming up February 12th, our presentation this month will be Evolution in Deep Time and Life in Modern Times on the Island of Madagascar by Dr. David Krause.

Dr. Krause's presentation will focus on field science conducted in Madagascar, one of the very poorest countries on Earth. The paleontological project that he initiated there 30 years ago focused on the collection and analysis of Late Cretaceous vertebrates, everything from fishes to dinosaurs to mammals, and their geological context. The project has yielded exquisitely preserved and complete skulls and skeletons that have allowed him and his teams to address hypotheses concerning the evolutionary and biogeographic history of not just Madagascar but of the entire southern supercontinent of Gondwana.

This research also led to interactions with various indigenous populations in remote regions of the island and the realization that field scientists, who benefit greatly from working in such areas, have the opportunity to give back and thereby make a meaningful difference in the lives of those much less fortunate. Dr. Krause will review some of his work with Malagasy children, work that has had the ability to profoundly change lives through education and, by providing medical and dental care, to save lives.

Dr. David Krause is Interim Director of Earth & Space Sciences and Senior Curator of Vertebrate Paleontology at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science; Emeritus Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of Anatomical Sciences at Stony Brook University (Stony Brook, NY); Research Associate of the American Museum of Natural History (New York, NY) and the Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago, IL); Founder and Executive Director of the Madagascar Ankizy Fund (; former Editor of the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (1987–1990); and former President (1994–1996) of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology.

Born and raised on a cattle ranch in southeastern Alberta, Dr. Krause received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the University of Alberta (Zoology) and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan (Geology, 1982). He was also awarded a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Alberta in 2010; an honorary doctorate from The University of Antananarivo (Madagascar) in 2012; and the Romer-Simpson Medal in 2022. Dr. Krause is a 50-year veteran of field research in Canada, the United States, Pakistan, India, and Madagascar and has published over 120 peer-reviewed research articles and edited four monographic volumes.


We will serve appetizers from 4:00 to 4:30, then start the program. A small donation is suggested for the food, and wine will be served for a $3 donation. The program will include announcements and a Humanist Moment before the presentation begins.

We hope to see you at 4:00 pm, on Sunday, January 22nd, at Jefferson Unitarian Church! It is an in-person-only event.

This program is hosted by Jefferson Humanists, a chapter of the American Humanist Association.-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

“The theory of evolution is quite rightly called the greatest unifying theory in biology.” - ERNST MAYR, 1904 – 2005, Populations, Species and Evolution, 1970

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