BEACON TRANSCRIPT – A project granted by National Geographic proved to be successful as giant crocodile fossils found in Sahara Desert showed the animal was as big as a bus.
It seems that the keener we are in finding what walked the Earth or swam in its oceans in other eras the more likely we are to succeed. Paleontologists are the ones to discover the remains of various ancient creatures. After digging them up they analyze them to find out how old they are and how the animal that possessed them looked like.
For example the remains they found in the Sahara desert were a fossilized skull and some other remains belonging to a crocodile which is said to have been living about 130 million years ago. The discovery comes as a surprise not only because the reptile was gigantic growing even larger than 30 feet long and 6,000 pounds, but also because it was found in Sahara, a region less explored for fossils.
According to the scientists’ measurements, the skull they found was over 5 feet long. It is believed that this crocodile is a marine one, therefore it spend its life in the ocean. The researchers named the crocodile Machimosaurus rex and it is believed to be the largest marine crocodile ever found.
The crocodile was a predator that fed on various ocean living creatures, including big turtles. It is clear that this crocodile was a sort of dinosaur. However, according to previous research, scientists believe that approximately 145 million years ago, at the end of the Jurassic period, something triggered a mass extinction.
But researchers say this crocodile lived 130 million years ago. Therefore, the team is inclined to believe that the mass extinction happening at the end of the Jurassic period did not affect all animals. This means that they might be able to find other animal fossils dating from the same era.
Its freshwater cousin, the Sarcosuchus imperator lived about 110 million years ago and grew up to 40 feet in length and about 17,500 pounds in weight.
The fact that such a discovery was made in the Sahara desert and the crocodile fossils date from 130 million years ago, gives hope to paleontologists that they could find in the near future other fossils just as impressive.
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