EXPERTS have identified a new saber-toothed predator that may have preferred rhinos more than 40 million years ago.
The carnivorous monster was originally part of a mysterious group of animals called the Machaeroidines that scientists knew little about.
And all thanks to a fossil found by a 12-year-old boy in California in 1988.
One team was able to study the lower jaw and teeth, as well as the complex 3D model, to find its origin.
This creature will lurk in the rainforest with “big, cut-ass teeth”, perfect for chewing on fresh meat.
“We know so little about Machaeroidine, so each new discovery expands our picture of them,” explains Dr. Shawn Zack, from the University of Arizona School of Medicine.
“This relatively complete, well-preserved fossil Diegoaelurus is particularly useful because the teeth allow us to deduce the diet and begin to understand how the Machaeroidines were related to each other.”
Machaeroidines are the oldest saber-toothed mammals known to scientists.
But they are so elusive that only 14 specimens have been discovered before.
It is an extremely meat-loving beast, making up more than 70% of its diet.
Today, of course, they are completely extinct and are not closely related to living carnivores.
The full name that scientists have given this creature seems a bit strange: Diegoaelurus vanvalkenburghae.
But there’s meaning behind it – it’s a mix of several dedications, including City of San Diego The county where it was found, and scientist Blaire Van Valkenburgh, whose work on the evolution of carnivores influenced their research.
The article was published in the journal PeerJ.
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/8515458/hypercarnivore-machaeroidines-sabre-tooth-predator-discovered/ Mysterious ‘super carnivores’ hunting RHINOS stalked the California plains 40 million years ago