Saturday, July 3, 2004

When giant hippos roamed Britain

LONDON, England (CNN) -- A rare fossil find in eastern England has revealed a prehistoric period when huge hippos roamed parts of Britain.

The hippos, six tonnes in weight and half as big again as their present-day relatives, roamed English swamplands with temperatures not unlike the African savannah, scientists say.

Their bones have been found alongside those of horses, hyenas, deer, primitive mammoths, rodents and plants giving what London's Natural History Museum says is an unprecedented insight into an unknown "warm" period 500,000-780,000 years ago.

"This is a rare and significant fossil find," says Simon Parfitt, paleontologist at the museum.....

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