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first_imgDonegal businesses and representatives on a trade mission in the US have been eagerly promoting the North West as a prime place for investment.A delegation from Ireland North West told a packed conference room of Boston businesspeople that they are ready to do business with them thanks to our local talent and skills base, our competitive operating costs, advanced telecommunications infrastructure and excellent education and business linkages.The delegation is jointly led by the Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council, Cllr Terence Slowey and Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Mayor Alderman Hilary McClintock, along with officers from both Councils. The group travelled to Massachusetts this week along with 17 local businesses and participating organisations such as Udaras na Gaeltachta, Ulster University, Letterkenny Institute of Technology and the North West Regional College, to promote the region for investment. Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Mayor Alderman Hilary McClintock and Cllr. Terence Slowey, Cathaoirleach Donegal County Council meeting the Irish Consulate General Fionnuala Quinlan at a breakfast meeting at UMass Building hosted by Enterprise Ireland.Following a breakfast meeting at UMass Building with the Irish Consulate General Fionnuala Quinlan hosted by Enterprise Ireland, the delegation held a North West Showcase where they spoke about the great work the two Councils are doing by collaborating to promote investment in the region.As part of the event the delegation launched their Gateway to Growth video and brochure and the Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council Cllr Terence Slowey spoke of the close working relationship and links between Ireland and the US while the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Alderman Hilary McClintock both Councils were keen to build on current links that would lead to real and long term business relations.John Kelpie, Chief Executive of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Tim Murray, President of the Worchester Chamber, Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Mayor Alderman Hilary McClintock, Cllr. Terence Slowey, Cathaoirleach Donegal County Council and Neely, Chief Executive Donegal County Council.Seamus Neely, CEO with Donegal County Council said there are many reasons why US companies should invest in Ireland NW. Neely said: “Our unique location is our strength, we provide the only UK land border with the Euro zone and we are within two hours drive to two international airports and four regional airports and have access to both EU and UK markets. Our young, well-educated population have a strong worth ethic, and 31% of our school leavers are educated to degree level ensuring they have the right skills for employment. On top of that our young people are hungry and ready for the challenge with a real ‘can do attitude’.”John Kelpie CEO of Derry City and Strabane District Council said that Ireland North West is ranked top 10 economies in the world for ease of doing business and starting a business and has a strong and diverse SME base that reflects the spirit of entrepreneurship.“We are extremely cost competitive offering the lowest prime office rent spaces for as little as 12 dollars per sq.ft compared to 42 dollars in Dublin and 72 dollars in Boston. Our connectivity to international and regional airports, our financial support packages and ongoing aftercare support makes us a highly attractive and competitive location to do business. “While our internationally renowned universities and institutions are key drivers to our technology and knowledge industries. But most of all it’s about our people and the quality of life we have on offer – our rich culture and heritage, breathtaking scenery and fantastic local environment and social offering is truly unique and very special.”He added that he hoped this visit would build on the good work that has been done over the years to develop linkages between the City of Boston and the wider Massachusetts knowledge corridor. Tim Murray, President of the Worchester Chamber welcoming the Northwest delegation to Worchester City and the wider Massachusetts region.Seventeen companies from the digital tech, education, agri-food sectors and creative industries made presentations at the event to showcase their product and business with a clear focus on trying to source business in US export markets.During their visit, the delegation will also attend meetings with businesses, potential investors and key influencers, as well as visit a number of sites such as Harvard and the State House and will participate in the Golden Bridges Conference.For further information visit www.irelandnet.comThe companies travelling as part of the delegation are as follows:GoWalkTalk; Gartan Technologies; Irish Gap Year; Irish Fish Canners; Qubizm; SLM Connect; Consilium Education; SLM Connect; Oideas Gael; Hanna Hats; Kelsius; Sendmode; Modern Democracy; Kinnegar Brewing; Studio Donegal; O’Donnell’s Bakery; Randox; Donegal Socks; O’Neill’s Sportswear.Follow us on twitter @dcsdc @donegalcouncil #IrelandNWMass2016Boston businesspeople hear about the best of the North West was last modified: November 16th, 2016 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:bostonBusinessDonegal County CouncilTradelast_img read more

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first_imgLooking a bit like a dolphin, but with a long slim snout filled with pointy teeth, one species of ichthyosaur was practically invisible in the murky depths of Jurassic seas, thanks to dark pigmentation that covered its entire body. That’s one conclusion of a new study that provides an unprecedented peek at the coloration of sea creatures alive during or soon after the dinosaur era.The new findings “are marvelous, so cool,” says Anne Schulp, a vertebrate paleontologist at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden, the Netherlands, who wasn’t involved in the research. “This is paleontology well beyond the bones, and [the team’s] arguments make perfect sense.”Soft tissues aren’t often preserved in the fossil record. As a result, figuring out what ancient creatures looked like—and particularly what colors they might have been—was by necessity speculative. But in recent years, scientists have developed high-tech methods to map the chemical traces of soft tissues in the rocks surrounding fossils, which in turn have helped them visualize the remains of pigments—almost literally bringing prehistoric colors back to life. Most previous efforts have focused on fossil birds and preserved remnants of their feathers, says Johan Lindgren, a vertebrate paleontologist at Lund University in Sweden. Now, he and his colleagues have used those techniques to analyze the fossils of ancient marine reptiles.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)For their study, the researchers looked at three sets of fossils (now housed in museums in Denmark, England, and Texas) of widely disparate creatures from different eras: a leatherback turtle that lived about 55 million years ago, a large predator called a mosasaur that lived about 86 million years ago, and an ichthyosaur that swam the seas between 190 million and 196 million years ago. (The ancestors of each of these creatures had once lived on land, so all three were air-breathers.) In all three fossils, outlines of soft tissue were preserved in the surrounding rock as dull black material. Paleontologists have long presumed such films to merely be carbon-rich remnants of tissues, Lindgren says. But a look at those materials with a scanning electron microscope revealed dense layers of tiny, rugby ball–shaped structures ranging between 0.5 and 0.8 micrometers long. These tiny bits are the same size and shape as the pigment-bearing structures (called melanosomes) found in the skin and scales of modern-day lizards and in the feathers of birds. Their ovoid shape suggests the pigments were black; melanosomes that lend a red or yellow color are typically spherical, Lindgren notes.When the team bombarded the fossils with charged particles and then analyzed the particles that were knocked from the surface (a technique called time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry), they chemically identified the remnants of eumelanin, a pigment that typically lends a black or brown color to skin or feathers. The rocks surrounding the preserved tissues didn’t contain the carbon-rich compounds, further suggesting the chemical remnants stem from preserved soft tissues and not ancient sediments, the team reports online today in Nature. Considering the concentrations of melanosomes the researchers found, even if the animals had other pigments that weren’t ultimately preserved, the pigment-bearing areas would likely have been dark gray or black.The overall pigment patterns in the fossils are very similar to those of modern-day sea creatures, the researchers note. In the leatherback turtle and the mosasaur, the pigments were concentrated on the upper surfaces of the animals’ bodies. Studies suggest that this dark-above-and-light-below color scheme, known as countershading, helps provide camouflage, Lindgren says. When lit from above (as it would be when the animal was swimming in a normal posture) and seen from the side, the lighter underside would be in shadow, helping the creature blend into the background, he notes. Because these creatures are air-breathers, they would have spent a substantial amount of time at the surface or in the shallow, well-lit portions of the seas.But the ichthyosaur appears to have had dark pigments all over its body. That’s unusual but not unknown among modern sea creatures, Lindgren says. The sperm whale is also dark all over—a color scheme that may help the fearsome predator hide in the gloomy depths where it typically forages.The pigments may have served other purposes as well. Dark upper surfaces, in particular, help modern-day marine reptiles such as leatherback turtles absorb sunlight while they bask at the surface. That boosts the creatures’ body temperatures, allowing them to grow faster and to forage for longer periods in cold waters.The team’s research “is very interesting, and it’s not trivial,” says Mike Benton, a vertebrate paleontologist at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom. “Several years ago, people would have said we’d never be able to tell what colors ancient creatures were,” he notes. “But here we are.”last_img read more