Scientists find remains of huge ancient herbivore

November 22, 2018 - 2:01 pm

BERLIN (AP) — Scientists say they've found the remains of a giant herbivore that lived more than 200 million years ago, around the same time as dinosaurs, in what is now Poland.

In a paper published Thursday by the journal Science, researchers described a four-legged, elephant-sized creature that belonged to the same evolutionary branch as mammals.

Grzegorz Niedzwiedzki, a paleontologist at Uppsala University in Sweden, said the fossil named Lisowicia bojani overturns the notion that the only giant plant-eaters during the late Triassic period were dinosaurs.

Similar creatures, called dicynodonts, were known to exist much earlier, before a series of natural disasters wiped out most species on Earth.

Christian Kammerer, a dicynodont specialist at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences who wasn't involved in the find, called it "very intriguing and important."

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