Thursday, March 24, 2011

Scientists discover five-million-year-old monster bunny

The 5-million-year-old remains of Nuralagus rex were discoveredon the Spanish island of Minorca by independent researcher Josep Quintana. At an estimated 12 kilograms, it was around 10 times the weight of wild Spanish rabbits today.

The creature was initially mistaken for an extinct tortoise.  Analysis revealed the giant bunny that had tiny ears and couldn't hop. Its closest relative was Alilepus, a now-extinct genus whose members were about a tenth the size of N. rex and lived in Eurasia and North America at the time.