Archaeologists discover saber-toothed vegetarian

Archaeologists discover saber-toothed vegetarian (AP)
This undated handout artist rendering provided by the journal Science shows a life reconstruction of the head of Tiarajudens eccentricus from the Permian of Brazil. Surprised scientists have discovered the remains of a saber-toothed vegetarian. The leaf-crunching animal lived 260 million years ago in what is now Brazil. (AP Photo/Science)

Surprised scientists have discovered the remains of a saber-toothed vegetarian.

Researchers report that the leaf-crunching animal lived 260 million years ago in what is now Brazil. It was about the size of a large dog and had nearly 5-inch long canine teeth.

The research team notes that large saber-shaped canine teeth are unexpected in a plant-eating animal. They say the enormous teeth may have been for self-defense or for battling for territory or females.

The creature is known as Tiarajudens eccentricus (tee-AH-ruh-HOO-denz ek-SIN-trik-us).

The researchers report on their discovery in Friday's edition of the journal Science.


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Citation: Archaeologists discover saber-toothed vegetarian (2011, March 24) retrieved 28 January 2020 from https://phys.org/news/2011-03-archaeologists-saber-toothed-vegetarian.html
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