Crocodilian 'Missing Link'
Paleontologist Felipe Mesquita de Vasconcellos presented the 80-million-year-old predator, dubbed Montealtosuchus arrudacamposi, during a news conference at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.
The 5.5-foot-long (1.6-meter-long) Montealtosuchus was a long-limbed and extremely agile animal that roamed arid terrain in what is now the Brazilian countryside, de Vasconcellos said.
"As a missing link to prehistoric crocodiles, it offers us an excellent opportunity to study the evolutionary transition of these animals," de Vasconcellos said.
"It has a mix of morphological traits common in prehistoric crocodiles and in the ones that exist today."
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