A crocodile can potentially eat Men was discovered in Africa. No panic, he has been living 2-4 million years ago.. Crocodylus thorbjarnarsoni, an enormous horned croc could measure up to 7.5 meters ( 27 feet ) long and was thus one of the largest predators of its time, when men were much smaller than now …
There are 21 species of Crocodile distributed between Africa, America, Asia and Australia. The saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) and Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus), the largest existing species, can reach an exceptional height of 7 meters; a size that is less than two-thirds of the Sarcosuchus ( supercroc ), the extinct genus of crocodyliform and distant relative of the crocodile that lived 112 million years ago.
Christopher Brochu of the University of Iowa, has described a new species, Crocodylus thorbjarnarsoni, which could reach 7.5 meters ( 27 feet ) long into adulthood. It has been missing for 2 -4 million years but was in his time as one of the largest predators living in Africa. All times confused, it must be the biggest known true crocodile, that is to say a species of the Crocodylus genus , known so far.
A crocodile-eating men?
This new species was described in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (JVP) with in-depth analyzes of fossilized skulls and jaws preserved at the National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi. They were extracted from sedimentary deposits, Pliocene and Pleistocene, found in the Turkana basin. This species would have lived between 2 and 4 million years BC. It closely resembles the Nile crocodile but much larger. Little story telling: four men had to join forces to raise one of the skulls when discovered!
Several factors suggest that our ancestors could have constituted a dish to enjoy eating these reptiles, although no evidence exists. The Turkana region is famous for its discoveries of human fossils dating several million years back. However, like all terrestrial organisms at the time, our ancestors or distant cousins had to drink and then attended the waterholes … potentially occupied by reptiles. Measuring just 1.20 meters ( 4 feet ) high, they could easily be swallowed by the predator. However, no human bones with bite marks were found in this place.
The emergence of Nile crocodiles is difficult to date
The author does not advance this hypothesis to support a popular view of the crocodile-eating men. He also relies on data collected for another crocodilian species described in 2010: Crocodylus anthropophagus. Fossil remains of this animal were found on the site of Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania, near places where the bones of Homo habilis and Australopithecus boisei who lived in the same period were discovered. As its name suggests, this reptile could occasionally feed on men because some hominid bones carried bite marks.
The author has used these findings to reconsider the phylogeny of Croc with morphological criteria. Crocodylus thorbjarnarsoni and Crocodylus anthropophagus can be described as sister species. Moreover, the true crocodiles would have appeared there are only 7 million years. The emergence of Crocodylus niloticus has however not been precisely defined, but one thing is certain according to the author, this species would have appeared after the disappearance of giant crocodiles.