Snakes were more like mammals with toes, ankles: StudyÂ
Thus far scientists were near unanimous that snakes actually evolved in water. But now it seems that their conclusions were based on wrong assumptions. A latest study claims that the snakes might have evolved on land and not in water.
The study also claims that snakes used to have toes and feet that helped them traverse the tough terrains. This is not snake alone, study claims that as many as 3,400 modern species might have the same prehistoric progenitor with real toes and ankles.
Daniel J. Field, a doctoral candidate in evolutionary biology and one of the authors while talking about the finding says, â€œHaving that tree as a backbone let us draw a ton of conclusions for what the ancestral snake would have been likeâ€. Researchers evaluated the collected data by using genetic sequencing using fossils and added to it to the anatomical comparison of 73 lizard and snake species. Yale Researchers believe that during the process they have created the most complete snake “family tree ever yet.”
He further adds, â€œI was most amazed by how strongly we inferred that the common ancestor retained hind limbs…Sometimes evolution plays out in unexpected and strange waysâ€¦We think we’ve got a strongly supported idea, and based on the mathematical reconstruction it is what is most likely to be true.â€ The study was published in the journal BMC Evolutionary Biology.