قالب وردپرس درنا توس
Home / Science / Newly discovered Triassic lizard may float underwater to pick up prey

Newly discovered Triassic lizard may float underwater to pick up prey



About 240 million years ago, the Triassic predator Jiyangshan short tail nearly shrank. Motionless in the sea-researchers found clues in his bones that could explain his unusual hunting methods.

Scientists of Beijing Chinese Academy of Sciences and Canadian Museum of Nature Researchers in Ottawa studied two bones found in thin limestone layers in two quarries in southwest China. The most complete skeleton was found in a quarry in Jiangshan, less than 60 cm long.

Experts confirmed that the 240 million-year-old remains were previously unknown dinosaurs: small-headed marine reptiles with teeth, flippers and long necks. Normally, non-dinosaurs have longer tails, which experts believe are used for propulsion-but newly discovered reptiles have short and flat tails.

The researchers pointed out that the forelimbs of reptiles are more developed than the hind limbs and may play a role in helping animals swim. Because the bones are thick and dense-including the vertebrae and ribs-appear to be short and fat in appearance.

more importantly, Experts believe that, based on evidence, Jiyangshan Bobtail is not necessarily a fast swimmer. However, its dense bones may provide it with an advantage: stability. Its sturdy, high-quality bones could have made it float in shallow water, and with its flat tail, predators could float still underwater without consuming any energy.

Invisible Hunter

Researchers also believe that this creature could have used its neutral buoyancy to track the seabed to find the next food.

Study co-author Shang Qinghua, a paleontologist at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said: “Our analysis of the two well-preserved bones revealed that reptiles have broad hypertrophy (dentate bones) and very short, flat tails.”

; In a statement. “The long tail can be used to slide in the water to generate thrust, but the new species we discovered may be more suitable for wandering near the bottom of the shallow sea. Use its short and flat tail to maintain balance, such as floating underwater, making It retains energy while looking for prey.” Shang added.

The reptile is very suitable for underwater hunting: neutral buoyancy should also enable it to walk on the seabed in search of slow-moving prey. At the same time, the high density of skeletal ribs also indicates that reptiles have large lungs, increasing the time the species can spend without showing up.

Paleontologists have discovered another feature that can help the short-tailed dragon move underwater: the creature also has thick and long bones-the strip bones of the middle ear, used for sound transmission-can help crawling animals in Sound is heard underwater.

Wu Xiaochun, a paleontologist at the Canadian Museum of Nature, said: “Maybe this small, slow-swimming marine reptile must be alert to large predators when floating in shallow water, and is also a predator itself.”, in a statement.


Source link