This species of turtle walked the Earth alongside dinosaurs2 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
And this exquisite species would have walked the earth with dinosaurs during the Cretaceous period!
This species was part of a cool gang of earthlings that included triceratops and the flying reptile pterosaur.
Meet the old-new turtle
Get a glimpse of this prehistoric creature by unravelling this jigsaw:
This turtle walked the Earth during the Cretaceous period—somewhere between 66 million to 100.5 million years ago!
The turtle has a frog-like appearance— it has an unusually flat skull, a thin lower jaw, and big tongue bones. Scientists believe that it was a suction feeder. It means that the turtle fed on small insects larvae and tadpoles by striking quickly at them.
Suction feeding is a method of hunting where the prey is sucked into the mouth of the predator.
Sourced from Giphy
Where was the turtle found?
The discovery of the near-complete fossil was made in Maevarano Formation in northwestern Madagascar. Madagascar is a country in east Africa that is known for its wildlife. This formation has given many exceptional fossils over the last thirty years! And in 2015, the turtle’s skeleton was excavated while removing overburden from the formation.
Overburden is the rock or soil covering a mineral deposit.
Madagascar was already an isolated Island back then, after moving away from the African mainland about 165 million years ago, and from Antarctica and Australia about 124 million years ago. This formation would have formed at a time when Madagascar had wet and dry seasons.
Can you find it on the map?
Let Owliver know in the comments below!
With excerpts from ABC News