The lizard Megachirella Wachtleri is tiny – but of great importance. As analysis of an international team of researchers in magazine Nature shows, reptile lived about 240 million years ago in norrn Italian Dolomites, more than 70 million years earlier than previously thought (Simões et al., 2018). Thus, ancestors of snakes, geckos and lizards existed at least during lifetime of dinosaurs; Even before stars of Primeval times, as data suggests.
"The results change our view of origin of one of most diverse groups of vertebrates on our planet," says Tiago Simões, main author of study. With his team, biologist examined a Megachirella skull bone that paleontologists had already discovered 20 years ago in sand and limestone of norrn Italian Dolomites. Until now, piece was about 170 million years old and belongs to supergroup of Lepidosaurias – more information The scientists have not been able to elicit from fossil.Not a shed lizard, but a shed kriechtier
Simões ' research group now knows more about it. The group has created a detailed 3d model of lizard and reconstructed skull bones. The visible characteristics, in particular three-engined scale leg, clearly assign Urechse to Kriechtieren (Squamata) shed.
The team furr estimates that origins of Megachirella Wachtleri lie before mass extinction of perm-Triassic border 252 million years ago. "So in Triassic-time ecosystem, y were most likely to have an equally crucial role as ir famous distant relatives, dinosaurs," says Simões.
With mechanism whereby reclassification of Megachirella wachtleri it becomes possible for first time to understand how snakes and lizards looked at beginning of ir evolution. Also, according to Simões, it is now clear that animals have become what y are today over a much longer period of time. According to current knowledge, group of shed Squamatas includes more than 10,000 species worldwide.Date Of Update: 31 May 2018, 12:02