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New Giant Lizard: Komodo Cousin "A Nasty Piece of Work"
nationalgeographic ^ | October 6, 2009 | Christine Dell'Amore

Posted on 10/10/2009 12:53:30 PM PDT by JoeProBono

A possible new species of giant prehistoric lizard—bigger and badder than the deadly Komodo dragon—may have stalked the ancient Australian outback, a new study says.

Three fossilized bones of the mysterious 13-foot-long (4-meter-long) lizard were collected in 1966 in western Timor island, part of Indonesia.

When study leader Scott Hocknull recently examined the fossils, he was "astounded" to find that they belonged neither to the Komodo dragon—the only giant lizard species alive today—nor Megalania, a 16-foot-long (5-meter-long) extinct monster that's among the largest lizards known to have ever lived.

Giant Lizard "a Nasty Piece of Work"

The "tantalizing bones"—which date to the middle of the Pleistocene epoch (1.8 million to 11,500 years ago)—are unique enough that Hocknull suspects they represent a new species. But only "more fossils and time will tell," said Hocknull, senior curator of geosciences at Australia's Queensland Museum.

The newfound predator would have lived in open landscapes alongside giant tortoises, dwarf elephants, and perhaps even the extinct human ancestral species Homo erectus, Hocknull said.

Like the Komodo, the lizard would have ambushed its prey.

(Related: "Komodo Dragons Kill With Venom, Researchers Find.")

"Being a large terrestrial carnivore," he said, "it would have been quite a nasty piece of work."

Komodo Dragon Born in Australia?

The new analysis also notes that numerous Komodo dragon fossils at least 300,000 years old have recently been found in Australia. This is among the evidence that the animals originated, and evolved into their giant form, on the island continent, then radiated west to what is now Indonesia, the study says.

And though the new giant lizard has yet to be definitively identified as a new species, "one thing is for sure," Hocknull said: There were many more giant lizards in Australia than anybody knew.

Climate accounts for some of his certainty. Australia began to dry up about eight million years ago, creating a perfect environment for lizards, Hocknull said.

To keep up with the ever increasing sizes of their prey, prehistoric Australian lizards got beefier over time—culminating in the titanic Megalania.

But just as Australia's giant lizards were "on their way up in the evolutionary stake," they suddenly died out, Hocknull said.

No one knows how the sole survivor, the Komodo dragon, managed to scrape by in Indonesia yet disappeared in its Australian birthplace.

"Climate, or humans, or both?" Hocknull said. "The jury will remain out on this one for a while."


TOPICS: Pets/Animals; Science
KEYWORDS: cryptobiology; cryptozoology; godsgravesglyphs; lizard

Two of the long-vanished big beasts of Pleistocene Australia, the Komodo dragon-like Megalania and a species of giant flightless bird known as Genyornis newtoni. What led to their demise? Illustration by Peter Trusler for Wildlife of Gondwana

MEGALANIA prisca


1 posted on 10/10/2009 12:53:30 PM PDT by JoeProBono
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To: All

2 posted on 10/10/2009 12:55:37 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono
What led to their demise?

Global warming, what else?
3 posted on 10/10/2009 12:56:25 PM PDT by tpmintx (Liberalism: Envy; but with governmental authority. (I'm green; are you?))
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To: JoeProBono

Crikey!


4 posted on 10/10/2009 12:56:38 PM PDT by beaversmom
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To: beaversmom

5 posted on 10/10/2009 12:58:25 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

..................rawr


6 posted on 10/10/2009 12:59:29 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (ALSO SPRACH ZEROTHUSTRA)
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To: tpmintx

7 posted on 10/10/2009 12:59:55 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: Psycho_Bunny

8 posted on 10/10/2009 1:01:55 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
9 posted on 10/10/2009 1:19:43 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: JoeProBono

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IW0a2qTioAA&feature=related


10 posted on 10/10/2009 1:21:54 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: ETL

11 posted on 10/10/2009 1:30:03 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono
I ♥ Komodo Dragons! I want one!
12 posted on 10/10/2009 1:32:17 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I LOVE BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: JoeProBono

Now thats a lizard mate!


13 posted on 10/10/2009 1:34:34 PM PDT by dog breath
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To: BunnySlippers

Komodo Dragons really really love children. They make great pets for a while.


14 posted on 10/10/2009 1:35:03 PM PDT by MaxMax (Obama can't play in the Olympic reindeer games)
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To: JoeProBono

15 posted on 10/10/2009 1:36:25 PM PDT by Eaker (Kaiden sez, "If you have a problem and If explosives are an option then explosives are THE answer.")
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To: MaxMax

Lil Bebbeh Komodos?


16 posted on 10/10/2009 1:37:05 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I LOVE BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: JoeProBono
Anole on the Screen
17 posted on 10/10/2009 1:37:51 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: Eaker

Caption: “The lizard ate my BC.”


18 posted on 10/10/2009 1:37:57 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: BunnySlippers

19 posted on 10/10/2009 1:39:21 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

That is SO cute!


20 posted on 10/10/2009 1:40:54 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I LOVE BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: dog breath

A Komodo Dragon bite Sharon Stone’s husband.

[Sounds familiar]


21 posted on 10/10/2009 1:42:01 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I LOVE BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: JoeProBono
I knew it!!! According to Gnat Geo. the ancestors of the Kokomo dragons walked upright as the picture shows though not quite like humans.
Because of their large size they've been designated Lardis Rapporsaurs, or “Lardi”, and rapporsaurs because their small lungs made them breathe hard in the heat of the outback, sounding like this, “baaphuttt, ba-babba, ba-phuffft”.

But it seems the giant lizards, unlike the fellow in the picture, were heavily feathered and when they ate fermented watery berries to cool off, they became drunk and while lounging around they were killed by the Abridgeknee peoples who still wear feathers on their heads to honor the extinct lizards.

22 posted on 10/10/2009 1:43:18 PM PDT by count-your-change (You don't have be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: Eaker

23 posted on 10/10/2009 1:45:52 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

on the ‘lost tapes’ show, someone was stalked by a very largwe creature and eaten- his video cam didn’t record the beast, but he fought it, got bit, and slowly w.as poisoned .and died .and was .consumned. supposedly-


24 posted on 10/10/2009 1:48:21 PM PDT by CottShop (Scientific belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge)
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To: JoeProBono
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
25 posted on 10/10/2009 1:49:27 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: JoeProBono
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
26 posted on 10/10/2009 1:52:57 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: JoeProBono
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
27 posted on 10/10/2009 1:55:51 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: JoeProBono
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
28 posted on 10/10/2009 2:04:37 PM PDT by ETL (ALL (most?) of the Obama-commie connections at my FR Home page: http://www.freerepublic.com/~etl/)
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To: JoeProBono
Sure it wasn't this guy's big brother ??


29 posted on 10/10/2009 2:52:05 PM PDT by Salgak (Acme Lasers presents: The Energizer Border: I dare you to try and cross it. . .)
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To: JoeProBono

Proto type Pit bull....just got bred down to their present size...:O)


30 posted on 10/10/2009 4:39:04 PM PDT by goat granny
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To: Salgak

31 posted on 10/10/2009 4:43:58 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Designer handbags...now available with feet. Next on QVC!


32 posted on 10/10/2009 4:46:00 PM PDT by IrishPennant (Then join hand in hand, brave Americans all! By uniting we stand, by dividing we fall.)
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To: JoeProBono

The “new” lizard, has been dead for 11000 years?

I’m protesting the title of this thread. False, misleading, and robbed me of my intended outcome.... A lizard that ate Nobel Prize Winners.


33 posted on 10/10/2009 4:56:52 PM PDT by Professional
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To: JoeProBono

REUNITE GONDWANALAND!


34 posted on 10/10/2009 9:46:48 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("When France chides you for appeasement, you know you're scraping bottom." --Charles Krauthammer)
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To: Slings and Arrows

35 posted on 10/10/2009 9:55:30 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: JoeProBono

Hurrah!


36 posted on 10/10/2009 10:07:13 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("When France chides you for appeasement, you know you're scraping bottom." --Charles Krauthammer)
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To: JoeProBono

“We’re gonna need a bigger spear!”


37 posted on 10/10/2009 10:12:55 PM PDT by Tainan (Cogito, ergo conservatus)
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To: JoeProBono

If these things still existed they would be running around Florida.


38 posted on 10/10/2009 10:17:21 PM PDT by Lucius Cornelius Sulla (He said red, yellow, black or white, All are equal in his sight, Mmm, mmm, mm!, Barack Hussein Obama)
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To: Lucius Cornelius Sulla

39 posted on 10/10/2009 10:28:27 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: Lucius Cornelius Sulla

40 posted on 10/10/2009 10:33:22 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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Dragon’s Paradise Lost:
Komodo Dragons Most Likely Evolved In Australia, Dispersed To Indonesia
sciencedaily | Oct. 1, 2009
Posted on 10/02/2009 4:11:59 PM PDT by JoeProBono
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2353794/posts


41 posted on 10/11/2009 6:32:48 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: ETL

Sue Charlton: That croc was going to eat me alive.

Michael J. “Crocodile” Dundee: Well, I wouldn’t hold that against him. Same thought crossed my mind once or twice.


42 posted on 10/11/2009 6:37:39 PM PDT by PLMerite (Speak Truth to Stupid.)
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43 posted on 10/11/2009 6:37:43 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: JoeProBono

I hate to disagree with you Joe, but THE ONE is part of the snake family, not the lizard family....


44 posted on 04/07/2010 11:55:58 AM PDT by BigEdLB (Now there ARE 1,000,000 regrets - but it may be too late.)
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