Snake with hips most primitive ever found

Apr 20, 2006

Scientists in Argentina say they have found a snake with hips and hind legs that provides additional evidence of descent from a land-living lizard.

Najash rionegrina lived about 90 million years ago in the late Cretaceous, at a time when birds were evolving from dinosaurs and the great world continent Pangaea was breaking up, researchers said. The fossil was discovered in southern Patagonia by Sebastián Apesteguía of the Argentine Museum of Natural Sciences in Buenos Aires, and Hussam Zaher of the University of Sao Paulo, The Telegraph reported.

In an article in Nature, the scientists say that the fossil is the most primitive snake found and demonstrates that snakes evolved on land, disputing a theory that snakes were originally marine creatures. The scientists told the Telegraph they believe that the snake's anatomy is consistent with a burrowing animal and say that the fossil was found in rock layers that appear to be terrestrial in origin.

Unlike modern snakes, najash had bones linking its pelvis to 3-foot-long hind legs.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: The stapes of a neanderthal child points to the anatomical differences with our species

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Study puts new perspective on snake evolution

Jan 05, 2015

Snakes may not have shoulders, but their bodies aren't as simple as commonly thought, according to a new study that could change how scientists think snakes evolved.

Recommended for you

Destroyed Mosul artefacts to be rebuilt in 3D

Mar 27, 2015

It didn't take long for the scientific community to react. Two weeks after the sacking of the 300 year-old Mosul Museum by a group of ISIS extremists went viral on Youtube, researchers from the ITN-DCH, IAPP ...

Boys plagiarise more than girls at school

Mar 27, 2015

Research by the University of the Balearic Islands has analysed the phenomenon of academic plagiarism among secondary school students. The study, published in the journal Comunicar, confirms that this practi ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

weirsy
not rated yet Aug 06, 2009
doyou think maybe the snake in the garden of Eden had hips and legs and could walk. Then when God cursed it, it had to go around on its body

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.