112 million years ago, a group of "crocodiles" adapted to terrestrial life, their limbs lengthened and they were more vertical with respect to the trunk. This allowed them to be more agile and faster on dry land, and to hunt more efficiently their prey, although not all were carnivores.
The discoverers, next to Razanandrongobe jaws
If something is curious about this suborder of reptiles called notosuchia, it’s that they have herbivorous, omnivorous and carnivorous forms. Covering several ecological niches and adapting amazingly to their environments.
But science now has to correct some aspects of notosuchia as they have made a new discovery. It is necessary to displace the appearance of these "terrestrial crocodiles" until the Jurassic, since the Razanandrongobe lived in the Jurassic 160 million years ago. It also exceeds in size the Barinasuchus of 6 meters in length, the largest notosuchido known, and is that Razanandrongobe was a heavy weight of 8 meters in length.
Recreation of Razanandrongobe
As if that were not enough, its jaw was full of huge teeth. The scientists who have described it compare its teeth with that of Tyrannosaurus rex, and it is true that there are similarities between both animals. They are ultimately very robust and powerful teeth, possessing a deadly and powerful bite. It was without a doubt the mega-predator of its ecosystem.
Hopefully Madagascar, place where the fossil has been discovered, provides new remains that complete the puzzle of this magnificent animal. Although we know enough to fear this "mouth with teeth". Escaping at his quick pace would be difficult, but it would still be more difficult to survive his lethal bite. And is that by seeing the fossil we can only rejoice to live 160 million years after its existence and marvel at such a fascinating predator.
Germán Z. López
This post can also be read in Spanish at our partner blog Made in Pangea.
Illustrations: Fabbio Manucci.