The remains of a huge dinnodonte creature called plant eater Lisowicia bojani were recently discovered in Poland – and scientists believe that this ancient herbivore existed 200 million years ago during the late Triassic period.
As Phys.org relates, this strange creature had characteristics that were very similar to a reptile, and also had a mouth shaped like a beak. However, this large reptile was the size of an elephant – weighing nine tons – and was actually a mammal, despite its appearance.
In the new study, which describes this startling finding, the Polish researchers were very clear that their discovery completely dissipates the notion that dinosaurs were the only large plant eaters roaming the earth at this time. And while other dicnodonts were certainly discovered in other areas, all these would have lived for much earlier periods.
The herbivore Lisowicia bojani was given its name after the village in Poland that was discovered, and scientists note that this newly discovered creature is considered a mammal. Paleontologist Grzegorz Niedzwiedzki of the University of Uppsala in Sweden co-authored the study of this new creature. He explained: "We used to think that after the extinction of the end of the Permian, mammals and their relatives retreated into the shadows, while the dinosaurs rose and grew to enormous sizes."
A giant plant-eating creature with beak-shaped mouth and reptilian features may have traveled the Earth more than 200 million years ago, demonstrating that dinosaurs were not the only monsters on the planet at that time, say scientists https: // t. co / QvhRUIA8wA
– DAILY SABAH (@DailySabah) November 22, 2018
Christian Kammerer – a specialist in dicinodonts, from the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science – called the Lisowicia bojani this was only discovered "surprising". However, he noted that the remains of this creature clearly illustrate that scientists still have much to learn about the animals that lived during the late Triassic period.
"Great dicnodonts were known before in both the Permian and the Triassic, but never on this scale. However, on the whole, I think this is a very intriguing and important article, and shows us that there is still a lot to learn about the first mammalian relatives in the Triassic. "
Other remains of dichinodonts that have been discovered have been found to have a wide range of sizes – from tiny creatures to much larger ones. O Lisowicia bojani remains that were found recently suggest an animal that would have been considered quite large for their respective time.
According IndependentTomasz Sulej, of the Polish Academy of Sciences, stated: "The discovery of Lisowicia changes our ideas about the most recent history of the dicinodonts, relatives of the Triassic of mammals. It also raises a lot more questions about what really makes them and the dinosaurs are so big. "
The new study on the remains of the great dicnodone discovered by scientists in Poland was published in Science.