Humongous South American Rodent Fossil Unearthed

Squirrels belong to the order rodentia, and more than 40 percent of all mammals are rodents as well. Back in the day, when it seemed all mammals were huge (think saber-toothed tigers and wolly mammoths), rodents were much bigger, too. But because of a lack of evidence, scientists didn’t know just how huge.

Until now. An almost intact skull of the Dinomyidae species was found on a beach in Uruguay, and scientists guess that the animal weighed at least a ton, and was about the size of a small car. Could you imagine that living in your walls?

One thought on “Humongous South American Rodent Fossil Unearthed

  1. […] What starts out as a rumination on how entertaining-yet-irritating backyard squirrels can be (”To see a Western gray squirrel wolfing down a garlic bagel at dawn is a remarkable and arresting sight..) turns into a essay on how, when we let our imaginations wander, we humans begin to wonder what squirrels can’t do. They are probably the next species of animal to rule the world. If we don’t make it through the global warming disaster, squirrels will be there, ready to seize control. Perhaps evolving back into their giant predecessors. […]

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