In Peru, skull of ‘marine monster’ points to fearsome ancient predator
Scientists think the ancient mammal was a basilosaurus, part of the aquatic cetacean family, whose contemporary descendents include whales, dolphins and porpoises.
March 18, 2022
LIMA, Peru — Paleontologists have unearthed the skull of a ferocious marine predator, an ancient ancestor of modern-day whales, which once lived in a prehistoric ocean that covered part of what is now Peru, scientists announced on Thursday.
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.