'TIS THE FINALE!! #1 seeded Doedicurus clavicaudatus vs. #4 seeded Andrewsarchus mongoliensis!

(DC: gettyimages.ca/detail/news-ph…; AM: Bogdanov 2006) #2018MMM
Tonight's battle has been brought to you by the mighty collaboration of @PKurnath & I. #teamwork #TeamKylo #2018MMM
Doedicurus, a.k.a. #TankMammal, made it to the #Sweet16 by being large like a boulder and tough like a battering ram. #2018MMM
Andrewsarchus made it to the big dance after crunching an ancient giant rabbit and stealing fresh meat from Thylacoleo (although not without getting wounded!). #marsupialcatscandal #2018MMM
Tonight we find both ANTECESSORS just over a million years ago along the modern-day southern coast of Uruguay (where fossils of #TankMammal were unearthed by Mones 1988) #2018MMM
#TankMammal is feeling pretty comfortable & at home doing what it always does: looking for food. Andrewsarchus, on the other hand, is almost 18,000 km away from home & about 40 million years in the future! #LowerSeed #2018MMM
Globally, things are MUCH cooler now (Pleistocene ~12degC vs Eocene ~20degC, Hansen et al 2013: rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/roypta…).

Andrewsarchus needs more fuel to maintain its high & constant body temperature. #EndothermyBaby #2018MMM
Andrewsarchus is sampling the new smells and shivering a bit when it comes upon what it thinks is a boulder. But the boulder is moving. #2018MMM
Doedicurus notices Andrewsarchus, but can't move fast enough due to its achy bones.

Andrewsarchus lunges with its massive jaws for Doedicurus' head! #CARNASSIALS #2018MMM
Doedicurus swings its head into Andrewsarchus' snout, slamming hard & bony growths into the predator's flesh (Zurita et al 2010 sedici.unlp.edu.ar/bitstream/hand…). Unbeknownst to Doedicurus, it hits Andrewsarchus on exactly the right spot to stop the predator. #TankMammal #2018MMM
The ThylaKYLO's slashes, which Andrewsarchus still bears, have become infected! Pus oozes from the seeping, swollen, & now reopened wound! #2018MMM
Andrewsarchus backs off, shaking its head. Doedicurus takes this moment to present its hard side to the predator, protecting its more vulnerable head and neck. #ComeAtMeBro #2018MMM
Andrewsarchus is still interested, but cautious. It attempts to circle around, but the alerted Doedicurus is just light enough on its feet to keep a side to the predator. #2018MMM
Annoyed, Andrewsarchus goes to where Doedicurus can't see it; its rump. It gnaws on the bony hindquarters with those turtle-shell-breaking teeth, avoiding being hit on the snout by Doedicurus' tail.

(credit: Mark Sheridan-Johnson; dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1…) #2018MMM
Unfortunately, the tail hits Andrewsarchus on its infected rump wounds! #2018MMM
What to do? Andrewsarchus steers clear of head and tail by gnawing at Doedicurus' side. It bites one way, then the other.

Will Andrewsarchus' powerful jaws be enough to crush through the shell? #2018MMM
Doedicurus waits patiently as Andrewsarchus slobbers & grinds its teeth against its hard shell. Andrewsarchus shifts its bite and closes down with all its might.


CRACK!!!!! #2018MMM
Andrewsarchus has broken a tooth on Doedicurus' hide! Its wounds smarting and its jaw aching, Andrewsarchus decides to seek softer quarry. #2018MMM

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More from @am_anatiala

Apr 3, 2018
UP NEXT: #1 seed Orinoco Crocodile vs #2 seed Amebelodon! #2018MMM
Tonight's battle also brought to you by @chumblebiome, @drew_lab, @MarkKissel, and @c_n_anderson. #2018MMM
Our fierce competitors tonight have crushed all that have dared stand before them in previous rounds. #2018MMM
Read 32 tweets
Mar 30, 2018
NEXT UP: #1 seeded PYGMY HIPPO vs. #2 seeded CHEETAH! #2018MMM

(photo credit: #actuallivingscientist @AnneWHilborn, Dr. John Carroll (snr.unl.edu/aboutus/who/pe…), Dr. Hernandez (warnell.uga.edu/people/faculty…) & @conservationorg (pygmyhippo.uga.edu/index.html))
Tonight's battle was a tag-team collab between @AnneWHilborn (Anne) and @am_anatiala (Asia)! #whapalabmates #2018MMM
ASIA: So, Anne, I wouldn't think that this 130lb/265 stoat-heavy fast cat would make it this far. Cheetahs aren't generally considered great fighters, right? *whispers* Unlike Kylo. #2018MMM #StoatsAsMeasurement
Read 22 tweets
Mar 27, 2018
NEXT UP: #4 seed Andrewsarchus mongoliensis vs #5 seed Thylacoleo carnifex! #2018MMM
To get here, Andrewsarchus taste-tested Nuralagus rex & the giant short-faced kangaroo blundered against our marsupial lion from down under, Thylacoleo! (AM: Bogdanov 2006; TC: Roman Yevseyev romanyevseyev.deviantart.com) #2018MMM
Now the 135kg Thylacoleo has bought a ticket to Inner Mongolia to face off against the (estimated) 810kg Andrewsarchus. Whether that ticket is one-way or round-trip remains to be seen. #2018MMM
Read 19 tweets
Mar 23, 2018
#1 seed Harar hyena
#8 seed Bristol fox!
Less than two days ago, the hyena from the walled eastern Ethiopian city of Harar devoured the Belo Horizonte marmoset, & the Bristol fox scare off a raccoon from some choice eggshells. Now these carnivores will face each other! #2018MMM
The Harar hyena & Bristol fox diverged around 54 mya, near the beginning of the Eocene (timetree.org). The Earth was warming, the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere doubled, & Antarctica was nearly tropical 🌴 (researchgate.net/publication/23…). #2018MMM
Read 14 tweets
Mar 22, 2018
#1 seed Orinoco crocodile 🐊
#16 seed praying mantis! 🙏🏽🦗
The croc & mantis diverged ~797 mya (timetree.org). Around this time the Earth went through an ice age that covered the entire world.

This might have led to the rise of algae due to glaciers grinding up stone into nutrients! #2018MMM cosmosmagazine.com/geoscience/how…
The praying mantis showed itself to be a stealthy predator of the bigger goldcrest in the wildcard battle (here's a play-by-play of that battle: wakelet.com/wake/45f524b8-…). #2018MMM
Read 19 tweets
Mar 16, 2018
NEXT UP: #4 seed Andrewsarchus mongoliensis vs #13 seed Nuralagus rex! #2018MMM
Not much is known about A. mongoliensis because the only evidence we have of their existence is one massive, 3-foot long skull with enormous teeth (see quoted tweet). We know that they lived in Inner Mongolia about 45 mya. #2018MMM
Here’s a picture of what A. mongoliensis might have looked like (credit: Bogdanov 2006) #2018MMM
Read 17 tweets

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