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Saber-tooths and bear dogs, just hanging out


The fossilized fangs of saber-toothed cats hint at how the extinct mammals shared space and food with other large predators 9 million years ago.

Researchers found that the cat species—a leopard-sized Promegantereon ogygia and a much larger, lion-sized Machairodus aphanistus—lived together in a woodland area. They likely hunted the same prey—horses and wild boar.

“These three animals were sympatric—they inhabited the same geographic area at the same time. What they did to coexist was to avoid each other and partition the resources,” says Soledad Domingo, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Michigan Museum of Paleontology.

Full story at Futurity.

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Photo credit: detail from illustration by Mauricio Antón

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