Townsville Bulletin

Old eagle discovered


A WELL-PRESERVED 25million-year-old fossilised skeleton of Australia’s oldest eagle species has been found on an outback cattle station in South Australia.

Archaehier­ax sylvestris is one of the world’s oldest eaglelike raptors, and is understood to have been slightly smaller and leaner than the wedgetaile­d eagle. It’s the largest eagle known from the Oligocene period in Australia.

Flinders University scientists say the raptor is unlikely a direct ancestor to any species alive today. It would have hunted koalas, possums and other animals in trees surroundin­g a vast, shallow lake.

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