General, Research, Technology

What ancient animals were even dinosaurs afraid of?

It's hard to believe, but it seems to be the mostdangerous and merciless animals on our planet are crocodiles. Judge for yourself - if a person or any animal happens to be near these toothy creatures, they will surely be torn to pieces. And this danger has existed for millions of years ago, because even dinosaurs were afraid of these predators. True, the ancestors of today's crocodiles were called Deinosuchus and had teeth the size of a banana. The remains of ancient monsters were first found in the 1850s in the United States. Their approximate appearance and lifestyle were described in detail at the beginning of the 20th century, and scientists only recently learned that they were a great danger even for large dinosaurs. And all because the teeth marks of these giant crocodiles were found on the bones of prehistoric giants.

Deinosuchus skeleton reconstruction

The most dangerous predators

The bloodthirsty enemies of huge dinosaurs weredescribed in the scientific publication Science Alert. As mentioned above, Deinosuchus have been known to scientists for a long time and they are well aware of what they looked like. It is believed that the huge ancestors of crocodiles lived from 75 to 82 million years ago. Outwardly, they did not differ much from modern crocodiles, but they were much larger - their body length could reach 10 meters, and the mass of some individuals was 8.5 tons. All the teeth of the ancient monsters were thick and strong, and in size they can be compared with a ripe banana. The front teeth bite, and the back teeth were designed to crush food.

These are crocodiles. Deinosuchs were very similar to them, but had larger bodies.

At the moment, scientists have managed to findremains of three species of Deinosuchus. Representatives of the species Deinosuchus hatcheri and Deinosuchus riograndensis lived in the territory of the present American state of Montana and northern Mexico. Individuals of the species Deinosuchus schwimmeri lived from eastern New Jersey to Mississippi. There were few differences between them - some species were larger, while others had minor features in the structure of the body. Researchers know for sure that the bite force of ancient monsters depended on their size. But even the smallest Deinosuchus, if 6-meter individuals can be called that, could attack large dinosaurs and win.

Deinosuchus fossil bones

The main enemies of the dinosaurs

While studying dinosaur bones, paleontologists,who study prehistoric times, found on the bones of dinosaurs the teeth marks of these same Deinosuchus. Most of the bites were on the leg bones, which is not surprising. Apparently, the ancestors of crocodiles hunted in the same way as their "great-grandchildren." The structure of the skull allowed them to breathe air, only slightly showing their head above the water. They could go unnoticed for a long time near the coast and wait for dinosaurs and other animals. When they came to drink water, Deinosuchus immediately attacked them. So, at least, scientists represent all this.

Deinosuchus as seen by the artist

It is important to note that Deinosuchus were notthe only ancestors of crocodiles who hunted dinosaurs. In 2019, I talked about other dangerous creatures of antiquity - predatory reptiles Rauisuchia (Rauisuchia). They were also very similar to crocodiles and reached 10 meters in length. Only their teeth were not as large as those of Deinosuchus. Photos of their teeth, which were found long before the ravisuchia were described as an ancient species of animals, can be viewed in this material. You will also learn about when and because of what the ancestors of modern crocodiles could die.

Ravisuchia skeleton

It might seem like crocodiles are oneone of those animals that have not changed at all since the days of the dinosaurs. The discovery and study of Deinosuchus and Ravisuchids proves that these predators evolved in the same way as many other animals. We can say that at the moment, small copies of ancient creatures live in African waters, so we are very lucky. After all, no one wants to deal with real Godzillas?

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Within the framework of this article, we figured out whichdangerous dinosaurs feared predators. Now I suggest you figure out what kind of animals the deadly sharks are afraid of. Believe me, these bloodthirsty creatures also have someone to fear - you can read about their natural enemies in this material.