Dinosaur baby eating snake discovered

275x250.jpgScientists have discovered the fossil of a prehistoric snake which they say used to eat baby dinosaurs.
Experts say the 3.5-metre-long snake named Sanajeh - which slithered around over 67 million years ago -  snacked on newly hatched dinosaurs.

The insight comes from the anaylsis of an almost complete snake fossil skeleton was uncovered coiled inside a dinosaur nest in India, it had been preserved by mud.

Even the world's best palaeontologists say it's not know what the baby dinosaurs would have tasted like to the snake... but our guess is chicken.
The findings—along with two other similar snake-egg pairings, suggest that snakes fed on titanosaur hatchlings when they emerged from their eggs.

"The eggs were laid in loose sands and covered by a thin layer of sediment. We think that the hatchling had just exited its egg, and its movement attracted the snake," said dino expert Dhananjay Mohabey.

Paleontologist Jason Head from the University of Toronto said: "Living primitive snakes are small animals whose diet is limited by their jaw size.

But the evolution of a large body size in Sanajeh would have allowed it to eat a wide range of prey, including dinosaur hatchlings.

"It would have been a smorgasbord. Hundreds or thousands of defenseless baby sauropods could have supported an ecosystem of predators during the hatching season."

University of Toronto        

Picture credit: Sculpture by Tyler Keillor and original photography by Ximena Erickson; image modified by Bonnie Miljour


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