Paleontologists in Bulgaria have found the remains of a fossilized panda that lived in Europe six million years ago.
EurekAlert notes that scientists have proven that these fossils, found in the 1970s, belong to a panda that may have been the last in Europe.
And she adds, the scientists named these panda fossils Agriarctos nikolovi, after paleontologist Ivan Nikolov, who cataloged the species’ upper jaw teeth and canines because the animal used them to eat meat.
Professor Nikolai Spasov says: “There was one incomprehensible handwritten mark, and it took more than a year to determine the location and age of this animal. And then we spent a long time determining whether this unknown fossil animal is a giant panda.”
It turns out that Agriarctos nikolovi is not a direct ancestor of the modern panda, but rather its close relative. This species fed on plants, and its teeth were not strong enough to confirm that it fed on bamboo. But perhaps the animal lived in forests and swamps, and died out due to climate change.
Source: RIA Novosti