Saturday, March 21, 2015

Bipedal butcher

Some 230 million years ago, a crocodilian standing on its back legs at over 9' (3 m) tall vied for food with dinosaurs in what is now North Carolina, U.S. Other smaller animals in the crocodile family – which have survived to this day – were further down on the food chain, the equivalent of foxes. Although its bones were excavated a decade ago, this beast has been identified as a new species and its name translates as "Carolina butcher." Paleontologist Lindsay Zanno of North Carolina State University says, "It was clearly a top predator. That's a niche we didn't know animals like this were filling.”

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