Four-legged whales and dolphin swam into Indo-Pak region 50 million years ago, as recently paleontologists have found their fossils. As per Lambert, the author at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, said that they have found a complete specimen of this amphibian dolphin for the first time. This discovery also highlights the fact that these mammals transformed themselves as per their habitat from land to the oceans.
On Thursday, they found that the ancestors of dolphin walked on Earth in the region where today India and Pakistan exists. Paleontologists claimed that the reason of their movement and the whole transition is that they might find the locomotion easy in water in comparison to land.
Paleontologists previously found some fossils in North America, which shows that the cetaceans in the end failed to carry its own weight and to crawl on Earth. Well, this new complete specimen found on Thursday proved the evolution of cetaceans, 42.6 million years back. Lambert also elaborated that if you look at the specimen you will find similarities of four-legged whale or dolphin with Otter, another aquatic animal. They are quite similar in the vertebrae and tail region which shows that they used to swim in water predominantly through their tail.
Four-legged Whales fossils
They have found fossils of a 13-foot-long mammal and named it as “Peregocetus pacificus” which represents that it has undergone certain transitions before adapting the marine life. The dolphin named Peregocetus pacificus has a quadrupedal whale skeleton and a complete fossil. It is found outside the India and Pakistan region, which is first known from the Southern Hemisphere and Pacific region.
Peregocetus would have started using its tail to swim and grow it further to become a dolphin. This is the only reason that makes it different from the previous animal found in Indo-Pak region, the cetaceans. Well Peregocetus fossils have long fingers, toes and limbs like slender which may find them hard to move on land. While on the other hand, they had a wide snout and robust teeth. The large grasping incisors and canines with molars to tear flesh may have helped them preying on medium sized fish.
Lambert also proposed that studies show that this mammal may have moved from South Asia to North Africa, then eventually crossed the South Atlantic to enter into a new world. Peregocetus made it obvious that the first whale who reached in America had the capability to move on land. The hind limbs of four-legged whales & dolphin disappeared gradually and this has not happened until 40 million years ago. This locomotive variation eventually evolves whale into marine life. The two cetacean groups which are alive today depicts the split of marine lives. The findings show that whale moved to North America through Greenland.
The paleontologist, Lambert said that there is a detailed working for 50 years ahead in this regard.