Unearthed: 40m-year-old croc fossil

The fossilised remains of an ancient crocodile species that apparently lived 40 million years ago have been unearthed in central Queensland, eastern Australia.

    Crocodiles have changed little over 40 million years

    Monash University researcher Lucas Buchanan was the first to identify the fossilised remains, which were unearthed by a mining company in a lakebed at Gladstone.

    The almost complete skulls, one lower jaw, and parts of the legs, ribs and claws of two of the crocodiles have excited scientists studying the evolution of one of Australia's more dangerous killers, still numerous across the country's tropical north.

    "It's important because it belongs to the earliest known genus of what's called Mekosuchinae - a big group of extinct crocodiles that dominated Australia and developed a large degree of diversity," Lucas Buchanan said.

    Buchanan said the new species of crocodile was very similar to the modern-day freshwater crocodile, suggesting the modern crocodile had changed little in millions of years of evolution.

    Not much is known about crocodiles that lived between 30 and 65 million years ago and Buchanan said the find would help fill a blank area of knowledge in evolutionary history.
    "The Queensland site has provided the richest and most plentiful supply of crocodile fossils from this time in history," he said.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.