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Palaeontology

Jurassic piranhas roamed prehistoric waters

By T.K. Randall
October 19, 2018 · Comment icon 3 comments



Small fish with sharp teeth have been around for millions of years. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Andrewself
A fossil belonging to one of the world's earliest known flesh-eating fish has been unearthed in Germany.
With long, razor-sharp teeth capable of tearing chunks out of other animals, these deadly Jurassic counterparts of today's piranhas lived in what is now central Europe around 150 million years ago.

The fossil was identified by an international team of scientists who also discovered the fossil remains of several other fish that this prehistoric carnivore and its kin had once feasted upon.

"We were stunned that this fish had piranha-like teeth," said study leader Martina Kolbl-Ebert.
"It comes from a group of fishes (the pycnodontids) that are famous for their crushing teeth. It is like finding a sheep with a snarl like a wolf. But what was even more remarkable is that it was from the Jurassic. Fish as we know them, bony fishes, just did not bite flesh of other fishes at that time."

"Sharks have been able to bite out chunks of flesh but throughout history bony fishes have either fed on invertebrates or largely swallowed their prey whole."

"Biting chunks of flesh or fins was something that came much later."



Source: BBC News | Comments (3)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by third_eye 4 years ago
Coming soon ... on 3D Blu-Ray HD ... Piranha VIII ... or is it IX ? ~
Comment icon #2 Posted by paperdyer 4 years ago
How about Piranha vs Raptor? Which one eats the fastest?
Comment icon #3 Posted by third_eye 4 years ago
That depends, in the water or on dry land ? ~


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