Cretaceous crocodile discovered in Brazil


From Reuters:

Armadillo-like crocodile roamed Brazil: researchers

Tue Jul 7, 2009 3:56pm EDT

RIO DE JANEIRO – Fossils found in Brazil are from a crocodile resembling a large armadillo that was a predator in the area around modern-day Sao Paulo state 90 million years ago, researchers said on Tuesday.

The 6.6-foot-long (two-meter-long), 265-lb (120-kg) crocodile, named the “Armadillosuchus,” appears to have been unique to that area, the researchers at Rio de Janeiro’s Federal University said.

The creature displayed some characteristics of an armadillo, with bony plates on its neck and back.

It had a carapace, a wide skull, a short, narrow snout, and relatively small, specialized teeth that make it distinct from any other crocodile discovered, the university said.

“The Armadillosuchus is only found in the interior of Sao Paulo state and this is a surprise, partly because it challenges the idea that crocodiles are found in hot and humid climates,” UFRJ paleontologist Ismar de Souza Carvalho told reporters.

“In this case, they are crocodiles that live in a climate that is quite hot, dry and arid,” he added.

The crocodile lived during the Cretaceous period, when temperatures would have reached about 113 degree Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius), the researchers said.

Researchers displayed fossils from the crocodile at a news conference in Rio, including the head, ribs, and foot. The fossils were first found in 2005.

(Reporting by Pedro Fonseca; writing by Stuart Grudgings; Editing by Sandra Maler)

Rare Philippine crocs released into wild: here.

18 thoughts on “Cretaceous crocodile discovered in Brazil

  1. crocodiles arethe lovely ones to have as apet but very dangerous tooooooo. very much attention is required to to take care of them. well stay away and have a nice reptile experience


  2. Artificial eggs spawn baby crocodiles

    Kendrapada, Aug. 23 (PTI): Wildlife lovers are jubilant as babies of estuarine crocodiles have emerged out of the artificially hatched egg-shells in the crocodile research farm of Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary.

    As part of the “rear and release” programme of these endangered species, eggs collected from the wild were hatched artificially, said Rajnagar mangrove (wildlife) division officials.

    Of the 79 eggs hatched this year, there has been emergence of 63 babies from equal number of nests, they said.

    The young crocodiles released into a captive pond would be reared for more than a couple of years before being freed into the wild. The rear and release of these hatched reptiles has been going on since 1975, funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

    The conservation project undertaken in Bhitarkanika tasted success while a similar UNDP-funded gharial conservation project launched simultaneously in Tikarpada sanctuary was a failure.

    From hardly a hundred, the crocodile population has swelled considerably over the years. Now, 1,572 crocodiles inhabit along Bhitarkanika’s water bodies, according to the latest census of these animals. The estuarine crocodiles are not found in any other river system in Orissa.

    Besides the mangrove forest along with its fauna, these reptiles are a major tourist attraction of Bhitarkanika sanctuary.


  3. 100-Million-Year-Old Crocodile Species Discovered

    New crocodile species that lived 100 million years ago found in northeastern Thailand

    BANGKOK November 25, 2010 (AP)

    A new species of crocodile that lived 100 million years ago has been identified from a fossil found in Thailand, researchers said Thursday.

    Komsorn Lauprasert, a scientist at Mahasarakham University, said the species had longer legs than modern-day crocodiles and probably fed on fish, based on the characteristics of its teeth.

    “They were living on land and could run very fast,” said Komsorn, who noticed the skull fossil in a museum in the summer of 2006. The 6-inch-long (15-centimeter-long) fossil was originally retrieved from an excavation site in Nakhon Rathchasima province, also known as Korat, but had not been identified as belonging to a distinct species.

    The species has been named “Khoratosuchus jintasakuli,” after Korat province, where the fossil was found, and the last name of the director of the Northeastern Research Institute of Petrified Wood and Mineral Resources, Pratueng Jintasakul.

    The finding has been published a peer-reviewed publication of The Geological Society of London.

    Northeastern Thailand has become an important site for paleontologists in recent decades. Numerous prehistoric fossils have been found in Thailand’s so-called dinosaur belt, where fossil-rich Mesozoic-era sedimentary rock has been thrust to the surface.

    Thai and French scientists began conducting joint research in the area in 1980 after a geologist seeking uranium found a dinosaur thigh bone in the late 1970s.


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