Based on a recent announcement, a new four-legged snake skeleton was discovered in Brazil explaining researchers how this species attacked and killed their preys. It appears that the exemplar used its limbs to strangle its prey and not to travel on the ground as scientists initially believed.
Archeology expert, David Martill, from the University of Portsmouth recently announced the discovery of the first four-legged snake, which was estimated to be 110-million years old. The fossil was unearthed on the territory of Brazil and was exhibited in a museum in Germany where Martill first saw it.
Ever since he first laid his eyes on the skeleton, the researcher has immediately become aware of the importance of his discovery. The four limbs, two in the front side and the other two in the back side of the body suggested the scientist that the study of the fossil could shed light on the evolution of this species.
Not long ago, it was believed that snakes evolved in water, from where they later on moved on the ground. Yet, the recent study of the two-legged and four-legged species has proven the opposite. Many more theories suggest snakes were land creatures that used limbs to cross the ground.
Martill’s newly found fossil gives more information on the behavior of these dangerous exemplars. According to researchers’ declaration, the four limbs were later on used by the Brazilian snake to attack victims, instead of crawling on the ground. Scientists believe so because the four members are too long for the ancient snake to have used them only for movements.
Judging from the physical characteristics of the snake, the species comprised 20cm long exemplars with 1cm long limbs. Unfortunately, scientists have not been able to discover other similar skeletons in the region, but they will continue to make unearthing works for the discovery of similar fossils.
The species was not only a ferocious predator, but further studies show that the snake developed carnivorous preferences at an early stage of their evolution. This discovery was explained through the presence of the bones that were found in the exemplar’s stomach.
Scientists will continue to study the fossil to determine its relationship with the modern day snakes. They will now focus on the reconstruction of the family tree of the species to better determine its location in history.
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