Melton Wold Fossil

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Bradysaurus was a group of extinct early reptiles found in South Africa. An ancient group of animals with massive bodies, strong limds and huge groteque skulls.

These animals roamed on the landscape that is today known as the Karoo more than 250 million years ago. 250 million years ago the Earth looked very different to today. What we recognise as the dry and arid Karoo was once a vast inland sea. Over time the sea slowly dried up and all that remains of that sea are fossils of the animals that lived along side its waters (like bradysaurus) and the sand and mud that has now turmed to sandstone and mudstone over time.

The rocks of the Karoo preserve a world class assemblage of fossils which show the early evolution of tortoises, dinosaurs and mammals. This is the only place in the world where such an extended fossil record of early evolution of “reptilian” life is preserved in a single place, a place that stores fossil treasures that show the most distant evolutionary ancestry of mammals in remarkable detail. The Karoo is a treasure chest of information about our ancient past and hold many secrets waiting to be uncovered.

Dr. Merrill van der Walt
WITS 21st Century Institutes
“Towards Global Top League Status”
Postdoctoral Fellow: Evolutionary Studies Institute (ESI)
Palaeosciences Centre

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