Palaeontologists stunned over twist in ‘holy grail’ four-legged ‘snake’ fossil find

, Palaeontologists stunned over twist in ‘holy grail’ four-legged ‘snake’ fossil find, The Habari News
, Palaeontologists stunned over twist in ‘holy grail’ four-legged ‘snake’ fossil find, The Habari News

“The major conclusion of our team is that Tetrapodophis amplectus is not in fact a snake and was misclassified.

“Rather, all aspects of its anatomy are consistent with the anatomy observed in a group of extinct marine lizards from the Cretaceous period known as dolichosaurs.”

The expert and his colleagues came to these conclusions based on the rock from which the fossil was extracted.

, Palaeontologists stunned over twist in ‘holy grail’ four-legged ‘snake’ fossil find, The Habari News

He explained: “When the rock containing the specimen was split and it was discovered, the skeleton and skull ended up on opposite sides of the slab, with a natural mould preserving the shape of each on the opposite side.

“The original study only described the skull and overlooked the natural mould, which preserved several features that make it clear that Tetrapodophis did not have the skull of a snake — not even of a primitive one.”