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Oldest Super Predator that Lived on Earth found
Scientists have discovered that a marine crocodile was one of the world’s oldest known super predators – carnivores that can feed on prey that’s as large, or larger, than themselves.
The toothy beast was a marine crocodile that looked part shark and part sinister dolphin. Its scientific name is Tyrannoneustes lythrodectikos, or “Tyrant Swimmer”.
“Tyrannoneustes lythrodectikos is the oldest known metriorhynchid macrophage – an animal that was adapted to feeding on large – bodied prey,” lead author Mark Young of the University of Edinburgh’s School of Biological Sciences told Discovery News.
He said that the term “metriorhynchid” refers to a group of marine crocodiles that were superficially similar to living dolphins. “They lacked bony armour, had flipper – like forelimbs and had a tail fluke,” he said. It evolved from related species that were opportunistic predators of small, fast moving prey.