Four Legged Whale

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An artist's rendition of Peregocetus pacificus, a newly described species of amphibious, four-limbed whale
An artist’s rendition of Peregocetus pacificus, a newly described species of amphibious, four-limbed whale(Credit: A. Gennari)

Whales weren’t always the giants of the sea that we know today – their ancestors plodded around on land before taking to a more aquatic lifestyle. Now a team of palaeontologists has uncovered the fossil bones of a strange new “missing link” whale species, which had four legs and was amphibious.

Named Peregocetus pacificus, the whale species was dated to about 42.6 million years ago, during the middle Eocene epoch. Measuring 4 m (13 ft) long, its four legs, tail and snout make it look more like an otter than a whale.

The creature was clearly just as comfortable on dry land as it was in the water. The team discovered tiny hooves on the tips of its toes – a holdover from its land-dwelling ancestors, which also gave rise to animals like camels and pigs. But they also found clues that indicated those toes were webbed, helping Peregocetus swim. The structures of the vertebrae in its tail, similar to those in beavers and otters, also suggested that its tail played a key role in swimming.

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About the Common Constitutionalist

Brent, aka The Common Constitutionalist, is a Constitutional Conservative, and advocates for first principles, founders original intent and enemy of progressives. He is former Navy, Martial Arts expert. As well as publisher of the Common Constitutionalist blog, he also is a contributing writer for Political Outcast, Godfather Politics, Minute Men News (Liberty Alliance), Freedom Outpost, the Daily Caller, Vision To America and Free Republic. He also writes an exclusive weekly column for World Net Daily (WND).

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