Fossils reveal that the first ever slithering reptile looks like a dragon

Finally, enough fossils have been compiled by experts to show that the first slithering reptile resembled a dragon.

The researchers used a fine-toothed comb to explore the near-perfect fossils of the world’s first sledding crawler and untangle previously unknown sides to discover that a change in the tree’s canopy likely made it possible for these creatures to fly.

The unique body parts of Coelurosauravus elivensis have been the subject of intense debate since the animal’s first fossils were found in 1907, raising questions about how and how the animal lived during the Late Permian period, between 260 million and 252 million years ago. Unusual body parts fit together.

(Photo: Photo: Nobu Tamura/Wikimedia Commons)

New research provides new insights into the habits and morphology of tetrapods, and decisively confirms how it is now the first known reptile to glide by assembling enough fossils to create a nearly perfect skeletal reconstruction.

The answer to the last question comes from the forest canopy where this unusual creature lived, according to experts from the Staatliches für Naturkunde Karlsruhe in Germany as well as the National Museum of Natural History in France and the French National Museum of Natural History in Paris.

Lead author Valentin Bova of the Paléontologie-Paris Research Center at the French Museum of Natural History explains their findings in the peer-reviewed Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, published today. He claims that while Pennsylvania’s forests were taxonomically and vertically heterogeneous, they had relatively open canopy layers with spatially distributed tree taxa, resulting in little overlap in the crown.

In contrast, cesular forests show evidence of more saturated communities indicating more unbroken canopy layers. While many arboreal or powdery amniotes have been described from Sisular and Pennsylvania sediments, there were no reports of gliders before Weigeltisaurids. This change in the structure of the forest may be the cause.

the Dragon

According to research, these dragons were not formed in mythical flames; Instead, they just needed a way to travel. Paragliding has proven to be the most efficient form of transportation. Their latest study shows how their morphology made this possible.

Related fossils were examined by the team, including C. elivensis and several other associated specimens, all members of the Weigeltisauridae family. The postcranial region of the body, which includes the extremities, torso, and the remarkable patagium glider, was the focus of their study. In organisms such as gliders, flying squirrels and colugos, the latter is a membranous flap that extends over the fore and hind limbs.

As in the case of the modern Draco species of Southeast Asia, which continues to amaze onlookers with its paragliding flights from one rainforest tree to another inhabited by it, previous research on reptiles assumed that its patagium was supported by a skeletal system extending from ribs.

Read also: Have these endangered gliders found a new home to live in?

sliding reptiles

But this comprehensive new research hints that C. elivensis patagium either came from the muscles of the torso or stomach, a group of bones in the skin of some reptiles that cover their stomachs, such as crocodiles and dinosaurs. Accordingly, the gliding mechanism was rested less on the abdominal region than in contemporary gliding lizards.

Scholars elaborate more theory On how this graceful animal moved throughout its arboreal habitat by combining this discovery with other discoveries obtained from the skeletal structure seen in the fossils.

Buffa added that the idea that the creature was perfectly adapted to move tree trunks vertically with ease is supported by sharp, curved claws and a compact shape of the body. The relative length of the front limbs helped the animal to stay close to the surface of the trees, which prevented it from suddenly throwing up and eventually losing its balance. This is another sign that he is an experienced climber.

This explanation is also supported by its long, slender body and whip-like tail, which is also found in modern arboreal reptiles.

Buffa says that C. elivensis is strikingly similar to the modern genus Draco. Although her habits may have been similar to those of her modern counterpart, there are some small differences.

Bova also pointed out that CoelorosaurusSuch as Draco lizards, was able to stabilize his patagium in flight and even modify it, giving it greater maneuverability. However, this ability may have been improved by an additional finger joint. This may have been a necessary adjustment to the lower position of the patagium, which may have made it more stable, science daily reports.

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