Argentine scientists have discovered a new species of flying reptile that lived 86 million years ago and that it was about 9 meters long. Nicknamed ‘the dragon of death’, this pterosaur was one of the first creatures on Earth to use wings to hunt down prey.
The team of paleontologists discovered the remains of the newly minted ‘Thanatosdrakon amaru’ in the Andes Mountainsin the west of the Argentine province of Mendoza.
Project director Leonardo Ortiz said in an interview last weekend that the fossil’s never-before-seen features led scientists to coin a new name for its genus and species, the latter being a combination of ancient Greek words. for death (thanatos) and dragon (drakon).
“I thought it appropriate to call it that. He is the dragon of death,” said Ortiz, aforementioned by Reuters. “We have no current record of no close relatives who have a similar body modification to that of these beasts”, explained the researcher.
According to him studypublished last April, it is very likely that the reptile had a frightening appearancesince the enormous bones found allow the new species to be classified as the largest pterosaur discovered to date in South America and one of the biggest found anywhere in the world.
The remains date from Cretaceous periodwhich means that these reptiles inhabited the planet at least 20 million years before the asteroid impact in what is now the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, which caused the extinction of the dinosaurs about 66 million years ago, they calculate the scientists.
The entrance One of the largest flying reptiles discovered in the Argentine Andes was first published in diary TODAY.