265-million-year-old S. America’s top predator fossil found


Some 40 million years before the iconic reign of the dinosaurs, a fearsome giant predator prowled prehistoric South America.
This was the era of Pampaphoneus biccai, an ancient reptile that once held the distinction of being South America’s largest and most vicious meat-eater, capable of eating tiny to medium-sized animals.
“This animal was a gnarly-looking beast, and it must have evoked sheer dread in anything that crossed its path,” described Stephanie E. Pierce, co-author of this new study and professor at Harvard University, in an official release.
An international team of paleontologists stumbled across the exceptionally preserved 265-million-year-old fossil bones in the remote area of So Gabriel, Southern Brazil.


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