Titanoboa (Titanoboa) — The huge snake that lived about 58 million years ago could eat crocodile or hippo, as had a length of 14 meters, and the power of its jaws compression was more than 180 kg per 6.4 square meters. cm!
I suggest you some interesting information about this snake, as well as a completely unique experiment modeled on the possible battle Tyrannosaurus rex and titanoboa! Who will win? And as Pulley, a huge serpent of our time, having eaten a man!
It seems that the reptiles of the past come back. I ask in the article!
Until a few years ago, scientists were unaware of the existence of this fossil animal.
"Even in my wildest dreams could not imagine that we will find the 14-foot boa constrictor. The largest of the modern kite half the size, "- said Carlos Haramillo of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and one of the authors of the opening.
Snake, which received the Latin name Titanoboa cerrejonensis (a huge boa Kerrehona), is the distant relative of modern boa and anaconda. She was not poisonous, but kill their victims tremendous compressive strength: more than 180 kg per 6.4 square meters. Some see this load was a man who fell under a weight of half the Brooklyn Bridge.
Fossils of giant snakes were found during excavations in the open coal mine in the town of Kerrehon in Colombia. In 2002, scientists discovered the fossils at this site rainforest Paleocene epoch — perhaps even the first of its forests on the planet.
Apart from fossilized plants found many reptiles, the size of which is amazing.
"We have discovered a lost world of giant reptiles turtle the size of a kitchen table and the biggest fossil crocodiles in the history of the research," — says Jonathan Bloch, an expert in the evolution of vertebrates from the University of Florida.
Among the finds was a giant and a snake.
"After the extinction of the dinosaurs is an animal, Titanoboa, was the largest predator on Earth, and it lasted for about 10 million years old — says Bloch. — It was a very big animal — as it may look. "
In search of fossil skulls
However, to have a full understanding of how to look prehistoric snake than it was fed and how it relates to the modern fauna, scientists needed to study the remains of a reptile skull.
"After 60 million years ago, dinosaurs became extinct at the equator was much warmer than today. We believe that this is why reptiles grew to a very large size "(Jonathan Bloch.)
Last year, the search for the skull Titanoboa was sent to Colombia a special research group, which, however, had little hope of success. The fact that the bones of the skull snake is very fragile, and to have survived a very small amount of fossil skulls.
"Unlike our skulls, bones in the skull snakes do not bonded together. They are associated tissues, "- said Jason Head, serpentolog from the University of the U.S. state of Nebraska.
"When an animal dies that degrade connective tissue and some bones are usually scattered — continues the scientist. — Besides, they are very thin and fragile and often break down. But as Titanoboa was so big and it had a very large bones, one of the few snakes that are known from the fossil record. "
To the amazement of the members of the group, they have found the remains of three skulls with which they are first able to fully reconstruct the skull of a giant reptile.
Thus, it was possible to get to know about how to live and how to look Titanoboa. Now in the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in the United States put up a fake snake in full size. In 2013, the exhibit will tour America.
The discovery of a new species of enormous fossil snake is helping scientists to learn about the ancient animal world, but also to obtain new information about the history of the Earth's climate. This means that the fossils can tell us about the consequences of the current global warming.
Snakes are unable to regulate its temperature and depend on external heat to survive.
"Tropical plants and ecosystems can cope with high temperatures and high levels of carbon dioxide. And this is — is another serious issue that binds the current trend of global warming "(Carlos Jaramillo).
"We believe that Titanoboa was so big because after 60 million years ago, dinosaurs became extinct at the equator was much warmer than today. We believe that this is why reptiles grew to very large sizes. "
Bloch notes that the ability of animals to survive in conditions of high temperatures may again become relevant if the predictions come true climate scientists on global warming.
The ability to flourish in a warmer climate may play an important role if global temperatures rise as predicted by climate scientists, Bloch added.
"This is an indication that the ecosystem can grow at temperatures to be expected in the next hundred or two hundred years," — he said.
Return of Titanoboa?
However, climate change is leading to the emergence of Titanoboa, took place over millions of years. Scientists say with less certainty about the consequences of sudden changes in temperature.
"Biology is surprisingly easy to adapt. Climate change and the conditions of life on the continent as an incentive evolution. But what happens very quickly, can lead to such changes, which can hardly be evaluated positively "- believes Bloch.
In the period of kerrehonskih rainforest levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was higher than the present 50%.
"Kerrehonskie fossils have taught us an important lesson we have learned that tropical plants and ecosystems can cope with high temperatures and high levels of carbon dioxide. And this is — is another serious issue that binds the current trend of global warming, "- said Carlos Jaramillo.
"Perhaps the plants and animals in the tropics already have a genetic ability to cope with global warming" — believes the researcher.
Does this mean that the giant snake Titanoboa may come back?
"When the temperature raises the likelihood that they will return," — says Jaramillo. — For the emergence of a new kind of animal requires geological time about a million years. But they may come back! "
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