Basilosaurus was a specialized type of animal that did not give rise to any later whales. Abrupt global cooling of the Earth’s climate at the end of the Eocene coincided with changing ocean circulation. This led to the extinction of Basilosaurus and most archaic whales around 34 million years ago.
Was the Basilosaurus a predator?
The new findings are consistent with Basilosaurus, the largest known marine animal of its day, being an apex predator. Evidence of whales preying on other whales is uncommon, both in the fossil record and among living species. But it does occur.
Is the Basilosaurus still alive?
Basilosaurus, sometimes known by its scientific synonym Zeuglodon, is a genus of ancient cetaceans that lived during the late Eocene, they are thought to have died out 33 million years ago, this was during the time the Eocene epoch ended and the Oligocene started. …
What did Basilosaurus look like?
Anatomy: Basilosaurus looked vastly different from all modern whales and dolphins. It had an extremely long, slender body, and had a narrow snout lined with teeth of different shapes.
What useless parts did Basilosaurus still have?
What useless parts did basilosaurus still have? Yet Basilosaurus still retained small, weak hind legs — baggage from its evolutionary past — even though it could not walk on land. None of these animals is necessarily a direct ancestor of the whales we know today; they may be side branches of the family tree.
Did the Basilosaurus have legs?
New specimens of middle Eocene Basilosaurus isis from Egypt include the first functional pelvic limb and foot bones known in Cetacea. … The foot is paraxonic, consistent with derivation from mesonychid Condylarthra. Hind limbs of Basilosaurus are interpreted as copulatory guides.
What do whales eat?
Whales support food chain
By eating krill, which are iron-rich, the whales unlock the iron and other nutrients in the krill. When the whales excrete this through their waste, it feeds phytoplankton, the microscopic algae that is a vital food source for not only krill, but also small fish and crustaceans in the ocean.
What country was Basilosaurus?
The world’s only intact fossil of an early whale – the Basilosaurus dating about 40 million years ago – has been uncovered during a new excavation at Wadi Al-Hitan, a natural World Heritage site in Egypt.
What habitat did the basilosaurus live in?
Basilosaurus would have been the top predator of its environment. Basilosaurus lived in the warm tropical environment of the Eocene in areas abundant with sea grasses, such as Thalassodendron, Thalassia (also known as turtle grass) and Halodule.
Can the Basilosaurus swim?
By 40 million years ago, Basilosaurus — clearly an animal fully adapted to an aquatic environment — was swimming the ancient seas, propelled by its sturdy flippers and long, flexible body.
What did the Basilosaurus evolve from?
Unlike the hippo’s ancestor, whale ancestors moved to the sea and evolved into swimming creatures over a period of about 8 million years. Fossils of gigantic ancient whales called Basilosaurus were first mistaken for dinasaur fossils but were later recognised as mammals.
Do whales go poop?
Whales feed deep in the ocean, but they swim to the surface when it’s time to poop. … Unlike fish poop, whale poop floats. It remains near the surface of the sea where its nutrients are needed the most.
Who eats killer whales?
Killer whales are apex predators, which means they have no natural predators. They hunt in packs, much like wolves, which are also at the top of their food chain.
Do dolphins eat?
Dolphins eat a variety of fish, squid, shrimps, jellyfish and octopuses. The types of fish and other creatures dolphins eat depend on the species of dolphin, where the dolphins live and the wildlife that shares their habitats. … All dolphins have teeth but they don’t chew their food, they just, grab, bite and swallow!
Do whales still have feet?
Scientists have found the first direct fossil evidence that whales once had hind legs and feet and retained smaller but functional versions of them for more than 10 million years after they left the land for a life at sea. … But in all whale fossils examined, paleontologists had yet to find limbs and feet.
Are whales related to seals?
Marine mammals are classified into four different taxonomic groups: cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises), pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses), sirenians (manatees and dugongs), and marine fissipeds (polar bears and sea otters).
How long ago did the Basilosaurid live?
basilosaurid, any member of the family Basilosauridae, an early group of whales that lived from the middle Eocene to the late Oligocene Epoch (about 41 million to 23 million years ago).
Do whales give birth on land?
The first whales gave birth on land, suggests a unique 47 million-year-old fossil of a pregnant female. The discovery provides the first concrete proof to a long-standing theory that the ancestors of whales lived something of a double life, moving back and forth between land and sea.
How do we know that whales and hippos are closely related?
In fact, hippopotamus are actually whales’ closest “cousins”, and they’re much more closely related than you might guess. Based on their fossil record, scientists have determined that whales are related to land dwelling mammals that lived on Earth between 52 – 47 million years ago.
What characteristics do whales and hippos share?
Hairlessness and Glands
Another notable similarity between the two groups is minimal hair. Both hippos and whales possess barely any hair on their bodies. They do not have sweat glands, either. These are both characteristics that can assist them in their aquatic lifestyles.