Scientists discover ‘balloon head’ dolphin
London: Dutch researchers have identified a new type of dolphin, which appears to have had a broad snout and balloon-like forehead, from a fossil found in the North Sea two years ago.
The newly identified dolphin has a short, spoon-shaped nose and high, bulbous forehead and belongs to the family of marine mammals known as Delphinids -- the ocean-going dolphins that actually include both killer and pilot whales, reports the BBC.
Researchers at the Natural History Museum, Rotterdam, have named it Platalearostrum hoekmani after Albert Hoekman, a Dutch fisherman who trawled up a bone from the creature’s skull in 2008.
The so-called rostrum’s bone is one of tens of thousands of fossils found during bottom-trawling in the North Sea in recent decades, museum researchers Klaas Post and Erwin Kompanje reported in the museum’s journal ‘Deinsea’.
The six-metre-long dolphin is believed to have lived two to three million years ago.
The fossil bone shows an unusually large tip region containing six teeth known as the premaxilla, suggesting the broad, blunt nature of the creature’s snout, said the researchers.
Based on analyses of similar fossils and modern relatives within the family, the researchers are convinced they have found a new species whose closest living relative is the pilot whale.
The fossil and a model of the dolphin are on display at museum.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Panel discussion over continuous chaos in Parliament on demonetisation
- Opposition observes 'black day' to mark one month of demonetisation
- 800 tourists stranded in Andamans due to heavy rains, Navy launches rescue operation
- Watch shocking visuals - Speeding car rams pedestrians in Kolkata, 3 killed
- Cashless transactions increased rapidly following note ban
- Twitter users blast Arvind Kejriwal as he says 'Modi will never appoint a Muslim Vice President no matter what Jung does'
- Yuvraj Singh-Hazel Keech Reception: MS Dhoni, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag attend lavish party — PHOTOS INSIDE
- Pakistan International Airlines plane from Chitral to Islamabad crashes near Havelian, 48 people dead
- Gali Janardhana Reddy converted Rs 100 crore black money by paying 20% commission, claims driver's suicide note
- Was Rahul Gandhi smiling during Jayalalithaa's funeral? Twitter users share pictures as proof