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Remains of 10,000-year-old giant sloth found
Sunday, October 30, 2011

Brasilia :  Scientists have found bones in Brazil that belonged to a 20-foot-tall sloth that lived some 10,000 years ago.

The bones were found in Minas Gerais state. The giant sloth probably lived in the Holocene epoch, according to the Correio Braziliense daily.

The fossil, which according to the experts belonged to the species Eremotherium laurillardi, was discovered by pure chance in the countryside by a farmer.

Though the farmer found the bones in 2006 and out of curiosity decided to keep them, the scientists were informed only in 2009.

The experts have not been able to determine whether the fossil was of a male or female.

But it was a herbivorous adult that could stand on its two hind legs and use its long claws to grab leaves and fruit from high tree branches.

"It's an incredible discovery and of great value to science - a prehistoric mammal that opens new and much wider perspectives for study," said geologist Carlos Borges, director of the Dinosaur Museum in Uberaba. (IANS)


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