Giant Fossil Platypus

Attention: open in a new window. PDFPrintE-mail

Giant fossil platypus found, according to reports in ScienceDaily 4 November 2013 and ABC News in Science 5 November 2013. Australian palaeontologists have found the molar tooth of a giant platypus at the Riversleigh fossil site in northern Queensland, Australia. From the size of the tooth they estimate the animal was twice the size of a living platypus at about a metre long. The fossil has been named Obdurodon tharalkooschild and is dated as 5 to 15 million years old. One of the scientists, Suzanne Hand of the University of New South Wales, described the animal: “Like other platypuses, it was probably a mostly aquatic mammal, and would have lived in and around the freshwater pools in the forests that covered the Riversleigh area millions of years ago. Obdurodon tharalkooschild was a very large platypus with well-developed teeth, and we think it probably fed not only on crayfish and other freshwater crustaceans, but also on small vertebrates including the lungfish, frogs, and small turtles that are preserved with it in the Two Tree Site fossil deposit”.

Michael Archer, also of the University of new South Wales, described the evolutionary history of platypuses: “We’ve watched the evolution over the last 60 million years. They used to be very robust with fully functional teeth. They used to be in South America. They were in Antarctica. They were all over Australia. Now of course they are smaller, they’re kind of shrivelled up, they’ve lost their teeth and they’re just in the eastern rivers of the continent”.

ABC, ScienceDaily

Editorial Comment: So, platypuses have gone from large, robust animals with teeth, who lived in many places all over the world, and are now small, toothless and only live in eastern Australia, and they call that evolution? Face up to it folks - that change is better described as degeneration, or devolution. Furthermore, the Riversleigh area is no longer a place of forests and freshwater pools filled with frogs, fish and turtles. It is now a dry place with low scrubby vegetation – another reminder that Australia has dried out, and become a harsher place. Altogether, this fossil is a reminder that the world, and the life forms on it, are going downhill, not evolving upward. (Ref. monotremes, teeth, mammals, Australia)

Evidence News, 6 November 2013

q_and_a2
crc_youtube
outdoor_museum_panel
free_audio2