First known turtle
first first
United Kingdom
Proganochelis is the most primitive turtle known, first appearing on Earth about 210 million years ago, during the late Triassic period and just before dinosaurs and mammals evolved. This anapsid was about 2 ft. (60 cm) long, had a shell, was an omnivore and had no teeth. It had a large ear-opening whith a function that is not yet fully understood. Its neck was not retractile so it was protected by little spikes set in the skin. It also had a long tale protected by armoured spikes. Interpretations of the environment it lived combined with features of the limb morphology suggest that it occupied fresh water as a bottom walker but it was not exclusively aquatic or terrestrial. Fossils have been found in Germany and Thailand.