Atlantic Ocean

()The we k today nothing like they did millions of yes ago.

Rather than being one of the lgest creatures on Eth, as they e , they came from creatures that were the size of an aver .
Paleontologists have discove skeletons of these ely creatures in and , but this find, as discussed in Thursday’s edition of the Current , was found in the Pisco Basin on the southern coast of .
The 2011 find by and his inter contned several surprises.
“As this is the four-legged skeleton for and the whole Pacific Ocean, the in itself was a surprise,” wrote in an . Lambert s at the Royal Beian Institute of Natural s. “We were also surprised with the geological of the find (42.6 million yes ago) and with the preservation state [of] so many bones from most pts of the skeleton, even including a patella (kneecap), some sm ankle bones, and the last phalanges with mks of hooves.”
This is the est kn found in this pt of the , and it is the most complete skeleton anyone has ever found out and . This pticul creature would have been up to 4 meters , or 11 feet, tl d.
The that found it named it Peregocetus pacificus. It means “the ing that reached the Pacific.”
long travel
s had kn that the ’ body shape had changed over the yes, making the creatures better adapted to in the ; , they didn’t k how the creature had moved from South to . Ely ancestors were not fully aerodynamic like e today.
“Four-legged , the ancestors of adays and dolphins, have been previously found in three mn regions: the geologicy est come from /, somewhat nger a [the plural of onomy] were described from North and , and even nger ones from the east of ,” Lambert sd. “Based on the avlable evidence, and on the that the postcranial skeleton is poorly kn in species from both and , several questions remned debated: When did quadrupedal reach the ? Which path did they take? And what [were their] locomotion abilities during that ?”
Mario Urbina
This 2011 confirmed that the s were probably good swimmers and good at getting ound on land.
Unfortunately, s did not find the last pt of the tl section of this creature, but the vertebra connecting this section of the bones was simil to what -day beavers and otters have.
North Africa
The also had toes that were most likely webbed, meaning they moved a lot like today’s otters. That’s probably how they crossed the Ocean, s sd. Today, a giant otter-type creature would have to swim a way to migrate, but at that in the Eth’s , the distance between and was two s shorter and the currents were strong.
From , they probably migrated to , as well. They probably didn’t become fully mine s until about 12 million yes after this creature roamed the Eth, s think.
e many intermediy sts of this “spectacul y ” that have been found over the yes, “but we still miss elements, so we should keep seching in pts of the , especiy in the Southern Hemisp, for skeletons of these strange four-legged , to make the whole scenio better understood,” Lambert sd.

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s continue to dig in this ea in . They hope to find bones that be even er so that they can fill in more pieces of this puzzle about how the evolved over .
“A skull would be , as well as the tip of the tl,” Lambert sd.


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