Members of the media gather around a 36 million-year-old basilosaurus whale fossil discovered in the Ocucaje desert, at the Museum of Natural History, in Lima, on Thursday. Reuters
The roughly 36-million-year-old well-preserved skull was dug up intact last year from the bone-dry rocks of Peru's southern Ocucaje desert, with rows of long, pointy teeth, Rodolfo Salas, chief of paleontology at Peru's National University of San Marcos, told reporters at a news conference.
Scientists think the ancient mammal was a basilosaurus, part of the aquatic cetacean family, whose contemporary descendents include whales, dolphins and porpoises.
Basilosaurus means "king lizard," although the animal was not a reptile, though its long body might have moved like a giant snake.
A basilosaurus whale fossil is displayed at the Museum of Natural History after its discovery in the Ocucaje desert, in Lima, Peru. Reuters
The one-time top predator likely measured some 12 metres long, or about the height of a four-storey building.
"It was a marine monster," said Salas, adding the skull, which has already been put on display at the university's museum, may belong to a new species of basilosaurus. "When it was searching for its food, it surely did a lot of damage," added Salas.
Scientists believe the first cetaceans evolved from mammals that lived on land some 55 million years ago, about 10 million years after an asteroid struck just off what is now Mexico's Yucatan peninsula, wiping out most life on Earth, including the dinosaurs.
Salas explained that when the ancient basilosaurus died, its skull likely sunk to the bottom of the sea floor, where it was quickly buried and preserved.
"Back during this age, the conditions for fossilisation were very good in Ocucaje," he said.
A woman brought the dogs to the LAPD’s Olympic Community Police Station, just northwest of downtown, around 6pm, said Capt. Jonathan Tippett, commanding officer of the elite Robbery-Homicide Division.
The 17-year-old African elephant, Noor Jehan, underwent emergency treatment for a tumour in Karachi on April 5, but collapsed days later and has since lain stricken on its side.
For centuries, the domestic goat was a staple of rural life in Croatia's Istria peninsula, an enchanting region home to rolling hills and picturesque coastline.
This remarkable achievement underscores Mediclinic’s unwavering commitment to providing patients with cutting-edge surgical solutions and revolutionising the future of healthcare.
The market stalls included several types of vegan leather, organic cotton and a seaweed-based yarn grown from regenerative kelp.
Food words are often the most fun, and the ones added this year reflect the ever-evolving culture of food and restaurants.