Strange sea-dwelling reptile fossil hints at rapid evolution after mass extinction

Posted by on May 23, 2016 12:36 pm
Categories: Science

For a long time, scientists believed that the early marine reptiles that came about after the great Permian-Triassic mass extinction evolved slowly, but the recent discovery of a strange new fossil brings that view into question. The newly described Sclerocormus parviceps is a marine reptile called an ichthyosauriform, and its strange features (short snout, long, whip-like tail) are really different from many of its relatives, revealing that marine reptiles evolved and diversified after the extinction more quickly than previously thought.

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