Horses and rhinos may have more in common, and may be more closely related than original thought after one fossils discovery in India.
A few newly discovered fossils have gone a long way to answering questions that previously had gone unanswered for long periods of time. As it turns out, the fossils, which were that of the horse, rhino, and the tapir allowed researchers to have the opportunity to solve the commonality questions that loomed about the species.
As it turns out, they are likely more closely related than ever previously thought. The belief is that the three originated within India – but that India was actually a subcontinent that was divided amongst itself away from the rest of the continent. The ancient Gondwana island was this piece of land, and the new report indicates that after debris in Wyoming were moved to India 13 years ago, which were found in a coal mine pit near Mumbai – 200 Cambatherium thewissi fossils were located.
The ancient animal was called Perissodactyla lived 56 million years ago and was dubbed the “odd-toed” creature, for the odd number of toes the creatures had on their back feet. While the details weren’t all that plentiful, it did give researchers the opportunity to finally figure out the missing link between the animals, and understand the evolution process of the animals a little more thoroughly.
It’s believed currently that the Cambaytherium is the youngest Perissodacylia that has ever been discovered, and while it’s considered to be the missing link between the generations or older and younger species of animals in the family – the new fossil makes the biological and geographical connection that otherwise could not be made.
The researchers found that the creatures that were located in India at the time were truly disconnected from the rest of the natural world – as India had not yet reached the rest of the continent. The isolation is both impressive from a geographical standpoint and a natural standpoint.
The team was able to put together what the Cambaytherium would have looked like, and noted that it likely weighed between 45 and 75 pounds.
Essentially, the creature would have looked like a mini-version of both animals and would have likely shared several physical features to earlier and later ancestors.