Prehistoric Crocodile: Life reconstruction of the head of Gnatusuchus pebasensis, a 13-million-year-old, short-faced crocodile with rounded teeth that was thought to use its snout to dig for clams and other mollusks. Model by Kevin Montalbán-Rivera. (© Aldo Benites-Palomino) Paleontology 

Prehistoric Crocodiles Ruled Ancient Peru

Today, the Amazon River basin is well known for its biodiversity, but the area also has a long history of abundant life. Thanks to an international team of researchers, we now know that thirteen million years ago at least seven different species of prehistoric crocodile hunted in the swampy waters of what is now northeastern Peru. Evidence of this hyperdiverse group of crocs was found in Amazon bone beds, and it shows the largest number of prehistoric crocodile species co-existing in one place at any time in Earth’s history. This…

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American crocodiles basking at a swamp in La Manzanilla, in the state of Jalisco, Mexico (Tomas Castelazo) Animals Citizen Science 

Crocodile Data Gets Crowd-sourced

Crocodiles are even more sophisticated hunters than previously understood, according to research from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Crocodilians (crocodiles, alligators, caimans) have been observed using teamwork and even tools to catch their prey. Recently, other studies have found that crocodiles and their relatives are highly intelligent animals capable of sophisticated behavior such as advanced parental care, complex communication and use of sticks as tools for hunting. These versatile animals can also climb trees. Now, Vladimir Dinets at UT’s Department of Psychology has found that crocodiles work in teams to…

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