Massive Extinction Fueled Rise of Crocodiles
by Tia Ghose
A massive extinction between the Triassic and Jurassic eras paved the way for the rise of the crocodiles, new research suggests.
The researchers, who detail their work today (March 26) in the journal Biology Letters, found that although nearly all the crocodilelike archosaurs, known as pseudosuchia, died off about 201 million years ago, the one lineage that survived soon diversified to occupy land and sea. The lineage included the ancestors of all modern crocodiles and alligators.
“Even though almost all the lineages except for one was extinct, the remaining survivors still did well in terms of morphology and body plans and the whole morphological diversity,” said study co-author Olja Toljagić, an evolutionary biology researcher who was at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich at the time of the study…
(read more: LiveScience)
- Saurosuchus: ArthurWeasley
- Gharial: by Adam
- Longosuchus: Arthur Weasley
- Chenanisuchus: Arthur Weasley
- Dakosaurus: Dmitry Bogdanov
- Pedeticosaurus: Smokeybjb
- derivative work: Matt Martyniuk
Bttm: Cladogram by Darren Naish