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In the world of science new discoveries are made every day. These discoveries seem to bring out new long-gone species that take the scientists by surprise. Last week they discovered a new species of dinosaur, a smaller type of Tyrannosaur. Now they’ve uncovered a 28 million-year-old whale skull. From what the scientists say, it seems that fossils belong to a new species of whale, more precisely a toothed whale named Cotylocara Macei. This new whale looked very similar to the modern dolphin and it appears to have lived in the shallow marine waters.
The 28 million-year-old whale skull has a deep cavity on its head that was used for storing air during the dives and it was also meant for reflecting sound. The new discovered whale could be the oldest evidence of echolocation that the paleontologist may have.
Jonathan Geisler, the author of the new study says that the 28 million-year-old whale skull has a very unusual skull anatomy and that he hasn’t seen anything like it in any living or extinct species of whales.
The researchers at the New York Institute of Technology say that the Cotylocara macei whale existed at the same time the toothed whales divided themselves from the non-toothed whales on the tree of evolution. This division may have occurred between 32 and 34 million years ago, meaning that the new discovered 28 million-year-old whale skull is pushing back the origins of echolocation to at least that era.
28 Million-Year-Old Whale Skull – new species make scientists wonder
Geisler said that: “The most important conclusion of our study involves the evolution of echolocation and the complex anatomy that underlies this behavior and this was occurring at the same time that whales were diversifying in terms of feeding behavior, body size and relative brain size.”
You can read the Geisler’s full article here.