A local farmer stumbled upon a large shell which he initially thought to be a dinosaur egg along a riverbank in Argentina. When archaeologists examined it closely, they found out it belonged to a prehistoric giant armadillo called glyptodont.
Paleontologist Alejandro Kramarz of the Bernadino Rivadavia Natural Sciences Museum confirmed with AFP, “There is no doubt that it looks like a glyptodont.”
“The animal became extinct thousands of years ago and it is very common to find their fossils in this region,” he added.
Jose Antonio Nievas found the meter-long shell at their farm in Carlos Spegazzini, south of Buenos Aires, Argentina.
“My husband went out to the car and when he came back he said, ‘Hey, I just found an egg that looks like it came from a dinosaur.’ We all laughed because we thought it was a joke,” Reina Coronel, Nievas’ wife, told AFP.
Nievas then went on to tell the story in the local television channel Todo Noticias. He recalled finding the shell partly covered in mud.
Glyptodons are believed to have roamed the swamps of South America between 2 million and 10,000 years ago. These mammals were herbivores, which means their diet were comprised of different plants. Their most distinguishing feature was their huge, round, armored shells. A fully grown glyptodon could reach 2 tons in weight and 1.5 meters in height.
Kramaz said the recently found shell is roughly 10,000 years old.