Extinct crocodiles of Madagascar


This 11 September 2018 video says about itself:

Voay is an extinct genus of crocodile from Madagascar and includes only one species—Voay robustus. Its name comes from the Malagasy language name for crocodile “Voay”.

Numerous subfossils have been found, including complete skulls as well as vertebrae and osteoderms from such places as Ambolisatra and Antsirabe. The genus is thought to have become extinct relatively recently during the Holocene.

It has even been suggested to have disappeared in the extinction event that wiped out much of the endemic megafauna such as the elephant bird following the arrival of humans to Madagascar around 2000 years ago.

V. robustus has been estimated to have obtained lengths up to 5 m (16.4 ft) and a weight of 170 kg (375 lbs). These estimates suggest that V. robustus was the largest predator to have ever existed in Madagascar in recent times.

Its size, stature, and presumed behavior is similar to the modern Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus).

One unusual feature of V. robustus that distinguishes it from other crocodilians is the presence of prominent “horns” extending from the posterior portion of the skull. Another diagnostic characteristic is the near-exclusion of the nasals from the external naris. It had a shorter and deeper snout than the extant Crocodylus niloticus, as well as relatively robust limbs.

Because V. robustus shared so many similarities with the Nile crocodile there must have been a great deal of interspecific competition for resources between the two crocodile genera if they were to have coexisted with one another. It has recently been proposed that the Nile crocodile only migrated to the island from mainland Africa after V. robustus had gone extinct in Madagascar.

3 thoughts on “Extinct crocodiles of Madagascar

  1. Pingback: Madagascar’s extinct elephant birds, biggest birds ever | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Madagascar bats help farmers, rainforests | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Crocodiles, from prehistory till now | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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