‘Terror crocodiles’ the size of buses with ‘teeth as big as bananas’ once preyed on dinosaurs, scientists revealAugust 11, 2020
AN ENORMOUS prehistoric reptile had teeth "as big as bananas" allowing the ancient beast to take down even the most mammoth of dinosaurs, according to a study.
The aptly named “terror crocodile” genus roamed the United States a during the Late Cretaceous period between 75 and 82 million years ago.
“Deinosuchus was a giant that must have terrorized dinosaurs that came to the water’s edge to drink,” said the study’s lead researcher Dr. Adam Cossette from the New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine at Arkansas State University.
The massive West Coast crocs D. hatcheri and D. riograndensis species and the newly described D. schwimmeri, which lived on the East Coast from New Jersey to Mississippi, are actually more closely related to alligators.
“Until now, the complete animal was unknown,” Cossette said.
Besides its banana-sized teeth, the “bizarre, monstrous predator” had a huge shnoz with gaping nostrils – which scientists are still working to understand.
“It had two large holes are present at the tip of the snout in front of the nose,” Cossette said.
“These holes are unique to Deinosuchus and we do not know what they were for, further research down the line will hopefully help us unpick this mystery and we can learn further about this incredible creature.”
The massive crocs, which could grow up to 35 feet long, disappeared before dinosaurs’ main mass extinction during the Meozoic period, according to the study published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.
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