This 35-million-year-old fossil is no ordinary discovery in the field of paleontology. This unique species, Thyrohyrax may have used a balloon-like structural chamber, shaped their bizarre jaws to produce sound. To make this finding, Duke University paleontologists measured hundreds of specimens of the fossil mammal.
The species is recovered from the fossil beds of Egypt’s Fayum Province. What led to this conclusion is that the male of this presently extinct species had oversized, swollen lower jaws thast was shaped much like a banana.
If predicted correctly, the Thyrohyrax is the only mammals that produced sound with the help of such a skeletal structure ever found! Some dinosaurs are thought to have used similar sound-producing mechanisms, but did not have such a structure.