Cub snake in a piece of amber: a unique find, the age of 99 million years

1 57714 May, 15:13 / Source: bbc.com
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Фото © bbc.com

A year ago, a snake cub was found in Myanmar, frozen in a piece of amber. According to scientists, the find was 99 million years old.

This calf supposedly lived in the territory of modern south-east Asia in the Cretaceous period. Finding such a fossil is a rarity. It was the first time that a snake cub was found in amber.

Scientists named it Xiaophis Myanmarensis, which means Myanmar's Dawn Snake. And not far from him found amber with fragments of the skin of a larger snake. To say for sure whether both finds belong to the same species of snake, the scientists could not.

The snake cub is probably stuck in the resin of the tree - thick and sticky, capable of keeping parts of skin, scales, feathers and even the bodies of animals and insects entirely.

“Pitch can be compared to superglue to preserve fossils. Yantar is unique: all that he touched, frozen in time in the resin, which by its properties resembles plastic,” said Michael Caldwell, a teacher at the University of Alberta in Canada.

The young, found in a piece of amber, had 97 vertebrae, to which the ribs are attached. The head of the reptile was absent. Scientists studied the bones of a snake using a synchrotron — a powerful X-ray machine — and compared them with modern snakes. They concluded that in almost 100 million years the anatomical features of the serpentine spine have changed only slightly.
Фото © bbc.com

Фото © bbc.com
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