Scientists discover almost 35 million years old rare snake fossil from Ladakh Himalaya

Tags: Popular Science and Technology

Scientists have discovered for the first time the fossil of a Madtsoidae snake from molasses deposits in the Ladakh Himalayas.

  • This indicates its prevalence in the subcontinent for a longer period of time than previously thought.

  • Madtsoiidae is an extinct group of medium-sized to gigantic snakes.

  • It firstly appeared during the Cretaceous and mostly distributed in the Gondwanan landmasses. 

  • Although, their Cenozoic record is extremely scarce.

  • The occurrence of Madtsoiidae from the Oligocene of Ladakh indicates their continuity at least to the end of the Paleogene (geologic period and system that spans 43 million years from the end of the Cretaceous Period 66 million years ago).

  • The research was published in the Journal of Vertebrate Palaeontology.

  • The newly discovered fossil specimen is housed in the repository of Wadia Institute, an autonomous institute of Department of Science and Technology.

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