The study — published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology earlier this week — revealed new research into the Deinosuchus, a huge crocodile that lived during the Late Cretaceous period in North America. The crocodiles were 33 feet in length. That means they “were nearly as long as city buses,” according to CNN.
“It was the largest predator in its ecosystem, outweighing even the largest predatory dinosaurs living alongside them between 75 and 82 million years ago,” the study said.
Scientists have long considered that the monstrous crocodile ate dinosaurs. Imagine being known for eating dinosaurs.
But now the researchers learned a little more about the size and shape of these beats.
“Deinosuchus was a giant that must have terrorized dinosaurs that came to the water’s edge to drink,” said Dr. Cossette, from the New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine at Arkansas State University. “Until now, the complete animal was unknown. These new specimens we’ve examined reveal a bizarre, monstrous predator with teeth the size of bananas.”
Bananas. Teeth the size of bananas. Wow.
Interestingly, the creature was closer to an alligator than a crocodile, according to the researchers. Technically, it wasn’t either of those animals but it’s sort of a distant cousin or something. The beast had a specific snout that no longer exists in its modern day representatives, though.
“It was a strange animal,” said co-author professor Christopher Brochu a palaeontologist, from the University of Iowa. “It shows that crocodylians are not ‘living fossils’ that haven’t changed since the age of dinosaurs. They’ve evolved just as dynamically as any other group.”