By Tinuade Salami
Scientists have discovered a well preserved crocodile eggs during excavations of a
dinosaur nest near the village of Lourinhã, north of Lisbon, Western Portugal.
A scientist, João Russo of Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal said the eggs
were laid by close relatives of "true" crocodiles, a group called crocodylomorphs.
He said the fossil record indicated that crocodiles and their relatives (forming the
larger group of crocodylomorphs) were much more diverse in the past, with different
feeding habits, ecological niche distribution or morphology.
João Russo added that the Crocodile bones were fairly common in the fossil record
and they included SARCOSUCHUS, the super-croc, which lived in the rivers of
Africa, eating dinosaurs and fish.
According to him, the fossil eggs from the crocodile family were rarer and were often
João said that ‘’the fact that they are from the Late Jurassic makes these eggs the
oldest crocodilian eggs known so far’’.
This new discovery from Portugal extends the knowledge of this type of egg by
approximately 40 million years."
Palaeontologists say Crocodiles arose some 200 million years ago, when they
prowled the land with early dinosaurs and that the prehistoric crocodile ancestor
would have spanned two metres, based on the size of the larger eggs.
Scientists concluded that the apex predators could be found throughout the world
and that they were successful predators.