US News: Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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US NewsScientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean

04:50  15 june  2019
04:50  15 june  2019 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean © Daily Mail Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia

A giant sea crustacean with a build designed to kill has been found fossilised off the coast of a popular tourist spot.

The 500 million-year-old fossil were discovered at Emu Bay Shale on South Australia's Kangaroo Island by researchers from the University of Adelaide, University of New England and the South Australian Museum.

The creature has a terrifying physique with 'crushing' legs and a 'shredding' spine made for eating and killing, with scientists describing the crustacean as the 'T-Rex of the trilobites'.

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They named it the 'Redlichia rex', in tribute to the dinosaur.

Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited James Holmes (pictured) one of the researchers who made the discovery believes the creature would have been a terror to other small sea creatures

'(It had) formidable legs with spines used for crushing and shredding food, which may have been other trilobites. This giant trilobite was likely the terror of smaller creatures on the Cambrian sea floor,' head researcher from the University of Adelaide's School of biological sciences, James Holmes said.

The creature belongs to the extinct group of trilobites, which were crustaceans and insects that had their skeletons on the outside of their bodies like armour.

Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The creature had distinct features like crushing legs and shredding spines that made it a large threat to other prey

This group of animals became extinct 250 million years ago.

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Fossils of a giant new species from the long-extinct group of sea creatures called trilobites have They are one of the most successful fossil animal groups, surviving for about 270 million years The new species is about 500 million years old , and is the largest Cambrian trilobite discovered in

The creature discovered at Kangaroo Island was the largest trilobite ever recorded in Australia, measuring up to 30cm, double the size of other animals of its kind.

Researchers believe it developed distinct features to deal with an 'arms race' of evolution between prey and predators and came at the time of the Cambrian explosion, a period where nearly all animal groups suddenly appeared over half a billion years ago.

Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The new species was 30cm in length, double the size of other trilobites (pictured is artist Katrina Kenny¿s impression of the Redlichia Rex)

'The overall size and crushing legs of Redlichia rex are are a likely consequence of the arms race that occurred at this time,' Mr Holmes said.

'The large size of injured Redlichia rex specimens suggests that either much bigger predators were targeting Redlichia rex, or that the new species had cannibalistic tendencies.'

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Fossilised faeces were also found within the crustaceans remains.

Scientists discover a 500-MILLION-year-old fossil off the coast of Australia - describing the creature as the 'T-Rex' of the ocean © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited The team of scientists found the fossil in Emu Shale Bay (pictured)

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