Before there were Indians hunting buffalo and before there were farmers plowing cotton fields, Crosby County, Texas was a vast crocodile-filled swamp that stretched all the way to Arizona! The crocodiles, called Phytosaurs, grew to lengths of 40 feet. But there was another fearsome member of these waters; giant salamanders, called Metoposaurs, that grew to lengths of 12 feet with heads nearly a yard long! Joe Taylor has been studying these amazing Texas-sized “water dogs” for 30 years. “They’re my favorite fossil animal, and while major museums do not collect partial skulls, I do. The information gleaned from studying the broken bones shows just how complex an animal they were. Finding as much as 50 percent of a skull may take several years, but I will go to the trouble to restore it.”
Mt. Blanco Fossil Museum is offering two of these fascinating skulls, each about 18 inches long and with restored lower jaws and a mouth full of sharp teeth. A cross-section of the teeth shows a complex structure of enamel.
The skull of the Black one is 50% complete. The skull of the brown is 90%