First we had the smallest dinosaur in the world, which turned out to be a lizard.
We now have a city-sized crocodile that was bitten on banana-sized dinosaurs, though it may be an alligator.
The story is unfinished without the end of tantalizing news, and a new study that reviews fossil specimens from extremely large Deinosuchus crocodiles, which literally means “terror crocodile,” has discovered it could knock down the largest dinosaurs out there.
There were actually several species, the team that published the study in the Journal of Paleontology Vertebrate earlier this week. Deinosuchus hatcheri and Deinosuchus riograndensis lived west of what is today the U.S. from Montana to northern Mexico, the study found. Deinosuchus schwimmeri lived along the Atlantic coast from New Jersey to Mississippi.
That was between 75 and 82 million years ago, when the North American continent split from a shallow sea stretching from the southern Arctic Ocean to present-day Gulf of Mexico, researchers said.
Researchers had long suspected that Deinosuchus had dishes to crush dinosaurs. But the latest discovery of bite marks on dinosaur bones and turtle shells amazed him.
A new study on Deinosuchus or “terror crocodiles”, led by Adam Cosette, offers a more complete picture of the ancient creature from head to toe. Cosette said Deinosuchus had large, strong teeth, ranging from six to eight inches long, as shown in the photo.
“Deinosuchus was a giant that must have terrorized dinosaurs that came to the water’s edge to drink, “Adam Cossette, of the Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine at New York Institute at Arkansas State University, said in a statement. “The whole animal was unknown. These new specimens we examined reveal a strange, monstrous, toothed banana-sized predator.”
The snoring expanded strangely in the front around the nose “in a way not seen in any other crocodile, alive or disappearing,” the researchers said in the statement, with two holes in the view of the case.
“These holes are unique to Deinosuchus and we do not know what they were for,” Cossette said.
Animals actually look more related to alligators than crocodiles. Mysteries and changes shed light on their evolution and show that crocodiles, instead of changing over the ages, have actually evolved over the ages.
“It was a strange animal,” said study co-author Christopher Brochu, a paleonologist and professor at the University of Iowa. “This shows that crocodiles are not ‘living fossils’ that have not changed since the age of the dinosaurs. They have evolved just as dynamically as any other group.”
Video: Scientists solve the Fossil Mystery of the Ancient Reptile with the surprisingly long, giraffe-like Neck (Labor Amaze)
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