British media say researchers say they have found the remains of two lizard-like creatures in ancient plant remnants, revealing the earliest known evidence that limb vertebrates care for their cubs. The fossil, found in Nova Scotia, Canada, is believed to be the remains of a newly identified adult and young son of a lizard, the Guardian reported on December 23.
Study co-author Hilary Martin, an associate professor at the University of California, Canada, said: ” (The adult individual) is estimated to be 20 cm long from the tip of the nose to the root of the tail. “
The researchers found that the young individuals were under the thigh bones of adult individuals and were surrounded by the tail of the latter , which the team said showed that the two animals huddled together in their nests.
The animal is believed to have lived 300 million years ago, pushing forward the evidence of long-term care for cubs in quadriplegicvertebrates for about 40 million years.
Any act that helps future generations survive can be called pro-parenting, such as egg care or nesting. Long-term parenting is any support provided after the cub is born or hatched, such as providing food or protection.
Steve Brusatte, a paleontologist at the University of Edinburgh who was not involved in the study, said the discovery of the fossil was exciting.
“Finding adult individuals with much smaller young individuals is strong evidence of their interaction sonin,” he said. Although it is always difficult to infer behavior from fossils hundreds of millions of years ago, it seems to me that this seems to be strong evidence of pro-generational parenting. “
He said the discovery was significant because it showed that progeny was an ancient practice. “It’s incredible to think of something that we think is so human – that parents take care of their children – that it’s been around so far in ancient times. (Compilation/Wang Qiang)