A rare 9-million-year-old porcupine fossil was found in Anatolia

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Scientists discovered animal fossils dating back 9 million years in a rural area in Tavas district of Denizli, including a rare quilled porcupine fossil rarely seen in Anatolia.

Dr. Ahmet İhsan Aytek, the head of the excavation team, said, “This year, we found fossils of a species from the cat family, quilled porcupine, and birds. Our initial observations suggest that the species from the cat family may be a sabertoothed tiger, but we will classify it with further detailed research. As for the quilled porcupine, it is a very rare species in Anatolia.”

Last year, fossils belonging to 15 animals, including rhinoceros, anteater, giraffe, horse, antelope, and gazelle, were identified in the region.

A rare 9-million-year-old porcupine fossil was found in Anatolia
Photo AA

Ahmet İhsan Aytek, mentioning the discovery of the “rock vertebrate fossil” area during surface surveys, stated:

“This year, we found fossils of a species from the cat family, quilled porcupine, and birds. Our initial observations suggest that the species from the cat family may be a sabertoothed tiger, but we will classify it with further detailed research. As for the quilled porcupine, it is a very rare species in Anatolia. In this regard, we have obtained an important fossil. In particular, finding a nearly complete skull and jawbones preserved in this way is perhaps a unique example in Anatolia.”

A rare 9-million-year-old porcupine fossil was found in Anatolia

The 9-million-year-old bird fossil has generated excitement.

“Birds have delicate bones due to their physical structure, making their fossilization very difficult. In Anatolia, there is only one place where bird bones have been found in a period spanning approximately 7 to 9 million years. This will be the second such discovery in our region. Additionally, we observe the presence of two different bird species, which is a first for Anatolia. These details demonstrate how well-preserved the fossils in our area are.”

The exact age of the fossils will be determined through chemical and geological research.

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