Mesozoic Earth ] Back | Next >

Location
 Africa
 110 million years ago

Mean atmospheric O2
 150% of modern level

Mean atmospheric CO2
 6x pre-industrial level

Mean temperature
 4C above modern level

Mesozoic Earth - An extinct Sarcosuchus compared to modern crocodiles; reptiles; archosaurs; Crocodylomorpha; Pholidosaurids; neosuchian mesoeucrocodylian crocodylomorphs; scale reference - Natural History Illustration Geologic Time Scale

 Era: Mesozoic
  Period: Cretaceous
   Epoch: Early
    Age: Albian

     
 

Sarcosuchus & crocodiles compared

An adult crocodyliform reptile of the genus Sarcosuchus from 110 million years ago is compared to a modern saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) on the left and a modern gharial (Gavialis gangeticus) on the right. The Sarcosuchus is about 40 feet long and weighs 10 tons* while the saltwater crocodile is 20 feet long and weighs 2 tons and the gharial is 20 feet long and weighs about 350 pounds.

The saltwater crocodile is currently the largest of all living reptiles, as well as the largest terrestrial and riparian predator in the world, while the gharial, aka fish-eating crocodile, is the longest-living and most aquatic of all modern crocodiles. Both modern crocodiles have been extant in their current forms for about 50 million years, though sadly the gharial is critically endangered with less than 300 known living individuals today.

* Values are estimates only based upon available paleontological data.

 

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