May 21, 2012

Freshwater turtle the size of a Smart car

side_necked_turtle_lr.jpgThe fossilised remains of a giant freshwater turtle was recently discovered in Colombia

Living around 60 million years ago, before the Andes mountain range was formed and some 5 million years after the dinosaurs became extinct, this massive “coal turtle” (Carbonemys cofrinii) had a shell which measures 5 feet 7 inches long.  According to the research scientists, this is the first evidence of “giantism” in freshwater turtles.


Bite marks on many of the turtle shells found at the site reveal battles between side-necked turtles and crocodiles.  According to the researchers, no crocodile would have dared tackle a fully grown coal turtle like those uncovered in Colombia. They say it’s more likely that this really big turtle (Carbonemys cofrinii) fed on crocodiles.

 Source: Mongabay


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