Friday, September 22, 2023
Google search engine
HomeScienceA rare fossil from China suggests that early mammals may have hunted...

A rare fossil from China suggests that early mammals may have hunted dinosaurs.

The release is linked to AT for you.

An unusual fossil found in China suggests that some early mammals may have hunted dinosaurs, according to new research.

The fossil — which dates back to about 125 million years ago — was found in China’s Liaoning Province in 2012, the Canadian Museum of Nature said in a release.

It comes from an area of ​​fossil beds known as the “Dinosaur Pompeii of China”, referring to the area’s fossils of animals and dinosaurs that were suddenly buried by mudslides and debris after a volcanic eruption.

Analysis by Canadian Museum of Nature mineralogist Dr. Aaron Lucier confirmed the presence of such volcanic material in the study fossils, the museum wrote.

Fossil hunter spots 450,000-year-old mammoth tusk during dig: ‘Sticks out like a sore thumb’

This image, provided by the Canadian Museum of Nature, shows tangled dinosaur and mammal skeletons. Scale bar equals 10 cm. An unusual fossil from China suggests that some early mammals may have hunted dinosaur meat for dinner. The fossil shows a badger-like creature bearing down on a beaked dinosaur three times its size. The research, published Tuesday, July 18, 2023, adds to growing evidence that when dinosaurs ruled the earth, some mammals were still eating. (Geng Han/Canadian Museum of Nature via AP)

Lussier was one of the authors of a study published Tuesday in the journal Scientific Reports that presented the findings of Canadian and Chinese scientists.

“The two animals are locked in mortal combat, huddled together, and this is one of the first evidences of true predatory behavior on a dinosaur by a mammal,” Canadian Museum of Nature paleontologist Dr. Jordan Mellon and fellow co-author said in a statement.

An example of a dinosaur being attacked by a mammal

This illustration, provided by the Canadian Museum of Nature, shows a reconstruction of a dinosaur attacked by a mammal 125 million years ago. ((Canadian Museum of Nature via Michael W. Skrepnick/AP))

The dinosaur in the fossil has been identified as a species of plant-eating Psittacosaurus, which lived in Asia during the Early Cretaceous – or about 105 to 125 million years ago. Psittacosaurus was an early relative of the horned dinosaur lineage, with a parrot-like beak.

The mammal was apparently a badger-like animal called Repenomamus robustus, one of the largest mammals of its time. It had small limbs, a long tail, a curvaceous body and sharp teeth.

Before the discovery of this fossil, paleontologists knew that Rhapenomus preyed on dinosaurs, including Psittacosaurus, because of fossilized herbivore bones found in the mammal’s stomach, the museum said.

A mammal nibbling on the ribs of a dinosaur

This fossil image provided by the Canadian Museum of Nature shows a mammal nibbling on a dinosaur’s ribs. ((Geng Han/Canadian Museum of Nature via AP))

Maryland paleontologists have discovered a rare 115-million-year-old fossil at a dinosaur park

“The coexistence of these two animals is nothing new, but what is new to science with this amazing fossil is predatory behavior,” noted Mallon.

The fossil was reported to be in the care of co-author Dr. Geng Han of Henan Vocational University of Science and Technology, who brought it to the attention of biologist Xiao-Chun Wu of the Canadian Museum of Nature.

The left hind foot of the mammal is holding the left lower leg of the dinosaur.

This fossil image provided by the Canadian Museum of Nature shows the left hind foot of a mammal gripping the left lower leg of a dinosaur. (Geng Han/Canadian Museum of Nature via AP)

The museum highlighted that researchers have ruled out that the mammal was scavenging a dead dinosaur, as the dinosaur’s bones do not have teeth marks and the position of Repenommus suggests it was also an predator.

The research team hypothesized that volcanically derived deposits from fossil beds in China would continue to yield new evidence of interactions between species.

A mammal's left hand wrapped around a dinosaur's lower jaw

This photo of the fossil, provided by the Canadian Museum of Nature, shows a mammal’s left hand wrapped around the dinosaur’s lower jaw. (Geng Han/Canadian Museum of Nature via AP)

“The presence of the fossil challenges the view that during the Cretaceous, when dinosaurs were the dominant animals, dinosaurs faced little threat from their mammalian counterparts,” the museum wrote.

The study’s authors acknowledged to The Associated Press that some of the fossils known from this part of the world have been faked, which Malin told the agency was a concern when he began his research.

Click here to get the Fox News app.

However, after making his own preparation of the skeletons and analyzing rock samples, he said he believed the fossil was real, and would welcome other scientists to study the fossil.

Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source by [Fox News]



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -

Most Popular

Recent Comments