Monday, June 4, 2012

Car-sized Turtle Found in Colombian Coal Mine

Remains of an enormous turtle, which was the size of a Smart Car, have been unearthed in a Colombian coal mine.

The shell alone of the 60-million-year-old turtle, Carbonemys cofrinii, aka "coal turtle," is large enough to be a small swimming pool. Its skull is roughly the size of a regulation NFL football.

The coal mine where it was found is part of northern Colombia's Cerrejon formation.

"We had recovered smaller turtle specimens from the site," Edwin Cadena, a North Carolina State doctoral student who discovered the turtle, said in a press release. "But after spending about four days working on uncovering the shell, I realized that this particular turtle was the biggest anyone had found in this area for this time period -- and it gave us the first evidence of giant-ism in freshwater turtles." Read More