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Tracce fossili di escavazione nel Triassico dell’Antartide

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Pre-dinosaur era burrows discovered in Antarctica

New York (PTI): Paleontologists have discovered pre-dinosaur era burrows in Antarctica, which they claim were probably dug up by tetrapods — any land vertebrates with four legs — about 245 million years ago. The largest burrow is about 35 centimetres long and six centimetres wide — it was preserved when a flood washed sand into it.

Though no animal remains were found inside the burrow casts, the hardened sediment in each burrow preserved a track made as the animals entered and exited, according to the paleontologists. “In addition, scratch marks from the animals’ initial excavation were apparent in some places. We have got evidence that these burrows were made by land-dwelling animals rather than crayfish,” Christian Sidor of Washington University, who led the team, said.

Despite the absence of fossil bones, the burrows’ relatively small size prompted the US team to speculate that their owners might have been small lizardlike reptiles called Procolophonids or an early mammal relative called Thrinaxodon.


giugno 9, 2008 - Posted by | - Mammiferi, - Rettili, 3 Triassico, Antartide, P - Impronte, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , ,

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