The nearly complete skull of a new species of ancient crocodile cousin has been found in Brazil, paleontologists say.
The animal is what’s called a crocodyliform, part of a group known as the crocodilians that includes modern-day alligators, caimans, and more.
Dubbed Pepesuchus deiseae, the new species lived between 99 million to 65 million years ago during the late Cretaceous period. Brazilian National Museum paleontologists recently found a skull and jawbone of the crocodile cousin at a fossil site in São Paulo state. Read more.
WASHINGTON – Surprised scientists have discovered the remains of a saber-toothed vegetarian. The leaf-crunching animal — about the size of a large dog — lived 260 million years ago in what is now Brazil, researchers report in Friday’s edition of the journal Science. Its upper canine teeth were nearly 5 inches long.
Such large teeth are more often the mark of a meat-eating animal, used to capture and kill prey.
The enormous canines were likely used by the plant-eating animals to fight each other or protect against predators, said research leader Juan Carlos Cisneros of the University of Piaui in northeastern Brazil. Read more.