A lot of creationists, for whatever, reason keep harping on and on about the lack of so called ‘missing link’ fossils on record. It really is a rather silly claim since a) extremely little material gets fossilised and b) there are already lots of missing link examples found and studied. Now guess what? That’s right, yet another has been discovered – this time relating to crocodiles.
Croc ancestor: A life-size reproduction of a Montealtosuchus arrudacamposi at Rio de Janeiro’s Federal University (AFP: Antonio Scorza)
Brazilian paleontologists say they have found the fossil of a new species of prehistoric predator that represented a ‘missing link’ to modern-day crocodiles.
Paleontologist Ismar de Souza Carvalho, of Rio de Janeiro Federal University, says the well-preserved fossil of Montealtosuchus arrudacamposi, a medium-sized lizard-like predator measuring about 1.7 metres from head to tail, dates back about 80 million years to the Late Cretaceous period.
“This is scientifically important because the specimen literally is the link between more primitive crocodiles that lived in the era of the dinosaurs 80-85 million years ago and modern species,” he said.
Scientists say Montealtosuchus arrudacamposi, an agile terrestrial predator of the Peirosauridae family, had different habits from today’s crocodiles but it was similar in form and structure despite having longer limbs.
The fossil was found near the town of Monte Alto in Sao Paulo state and is named after the place and the local scientist who dug up the fossil in 2004, Arruda Campos.
The new species is one of a number of important finds by paleontologists in Brazil and Argentina over the past few years.
It really is getting to the point where you seriously have to wonder what sort of evidence would satisfy creationists and the other oddballs who refuse to accept evolution as the best current theory regarding the development of life on this little planet of ours.