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New Species of Ancient "Swamp Monster" Discovered inTexas

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posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 03:19 AM
I did several searches and did not find this posted yet, please forgive me if it already has and please remove

Scientists say the fossils of an ancient "swamp monster" that roamed the wilds of West Texas are those of a new species.

Two crocodile-like reptiles called phytosaurs died about 205 million years ago in an oxbow lake, where they were entombed for centuries.

According to a recent study, the roughly 17-foot-long (5.2-meter-long) beast lurked in swamps during the Triassic period, when West Texas was a tropical rain forest lush with tall ferns and conifers.

With its 2-foot-long (0.6-meter-long) snout, Machaeroprosopus lottorum would have resembled—and acted like—a modern-day gharial, ambushing prey such as fish and amphibians from beneath the water.

The 2 skulls were actually discovered in 2001 on a ranch in the panhandle of Texas

The first skull the scientists found wasn't well preserved, but a few weeks later, they found the 2nd one which was in better shape but odd shaped

The odd-looking skull prompted the researchers to launch a lengthy effort to formally describe it as a new species. Now that it has been, scientists suspect there may be more species of Triassic phytosaurs than was previously thought.

And here is their rendition of what they think it may have looked like

edit on 3-2-2014 by snarky412 because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 03:29 AM
Thanks for the link, that's really interesting.

Here is a wiki for the Gharial so others can quickly compare.
The skulls are quite similar.

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 06:27 AM
Thanks for bringing this to me attention. =)

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 07:51 AM
Nice. I had heard about this earlier this morning.

West Texas, huh? Rain forest, huh?

In the Permian era this was all under water. We have tons of coral and sedimentary rock with little shell fossils. I used to wander the wilds as a kid, and have stood on fossils embedded in the rock for as far as the eye could see (or, as far as the rock stuck out of the Earth). The permian era gave lots of wonder to a young boy in this region. The indians left several petroglyphs, too.

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 07:56 AM
Ahh finally!

The source of the infamous swamp gas has been discovered!

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 09:56 AM
reply to post by snarky412

Nice find! It's beautiful. S&F!

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 11:02 AM
A bit like an aligator-gar.

posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 04:12 PM
reply to post by snarky412

Thanks S/F ...beautiful piece ! I envy the skullduggars that one. I spent my childhood digging up fossils in TX... but nothing near as fine as this.

Still... when I read your thread title - I sort of hoped for a moment that my long lost uncle from Houston had turned up.

posted on Feb, 5 2014 @ 09:01 PM
reply to post by snarky412

One day they will find something o big it will make the blue whale look tiny . If any one remembers the story of the scientist who where researching whale sounds and they stumbled upon a sound in the sea that was so loud it couldnt have been a whale , it was much bigger and much louder but the sound only lasted a few seconds and they never got to hear it agsin

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