Megafauna: Saber Tooth

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Megafauna: Saber Tooth
Megafauna: Saber Tooth

Saber-Toothed Kangaroos and Demonic Ducks

Australian paleontologists have found the fossilized remains of a kangaroo, named Ek altadeta, in the country's outback, which is a far cry from what is commonly known about these marsupials: they had wolf-like fangs, among other things.

But this does not seem to have been the only peculiarity of the carnivorous animals, as the researchers led by Michael Archer and Sue Hand of the University of New South Wales further report. Ten to twenty million years ago, these kangaroos did not hunt their prey by hopping, but actually galloped after them through the scrubland, as indicated by large, strong front legs in fossils. Once slain, they dismembered their prey with sharp-edged teeth that, according to Sue Hand, could even break bones and easily slit flesh from the carcass.

The site in northwest Queensland revealed a total of twenty previously unknown animal species - including lungfish and giant flightless ducks (dromornithids). The physical features of the birds suggest that they too may have been predators. For this reason and because of the impressive size of the fowl, which can be up to three meters high, the researchers called them "demonic ducks of doom".

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