Lion Teeth

Giant African carnivore fossil found, according to reports in National Geographic, Science (AAAS) News, ScienceDaily 18 April 2019 and Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, published online 17 April 2019, doi: 10.1080/02724634.2019.1570222.

Palaeontologists in Kenya were looking through drawers in a Nairobi Museum and found the jaw and some pieces of skull, bones and teeth of an extinct mammal. The fossils had been collected 40 years ago, but never formally studied.  Matthew Borths of Ohio University described finding the fossils: “Opening a museum drawer, we saw a row of gigantic meat-eating teeth, clearly belonging to a species new to science.”  The molar teeth were 6cm long and canines 10cm long. National Geographic described it as “a fierce predator that had lots of blades”.

The fossils have been named Simbakubwa kutokaafrika, meaning “big lion”.  The researchers estimate the animal was 1.2m tall, weighed 1500 kg and was 2.4m from snout to tail.  This is bigger than a polar bear, and significantly larger than living African lions.

The fossil creature was not a member of the “big cat” family, but belonged to an extinct group of mammals known as hyaenodonts, believed to have lived around 22 million years ago and were extinct by 5 million years ago, well before the ancestors of modern lions are believed to have moved into Africa.

National Geographic, Science, ScienceDaily,

Editorial Comment:  Gigantic teeth?  Yes.  Meat eating predator?  Not proven.  As we have said many times, the only way to really know what an animal eats to watch it eat something.  Large sharp teeth do not make an animal a meat eater or predator.  They simply enable an animal to cut and shred its food, whatever that food may be.  This fossil creature was compared to a polar bear in every report about it, and polar bears do eat meat and fish, but they often eat seaweed, berries, and any human food, meat or vegetarian, they can scrounge around human settlements in the Arctic.

Genesis tells us that all animals, whatever size and shape teeth they had, were originally created to eat plants. After Noah’s Flood God gave people permission to eat meat, (Gen 10-11) and animals no doubt did the same, especially as the environment rapidly degenerated and there was not enough nutritious plant food to be found in many places.

Evidence News vol. 19, No. 8
8 May 2019
Creation Research Australia

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