Around 112 million years ago there lived a giant crocodile called Sarsosuchus. It weighed about an average of 4 tonnes, as much as an elephant.
Sarcosuchus is an extinct genus of crocodyliform and distant relative of living crocodylians that lived during the Early Cretaceous, from the late Hauterivian to the early Albian, 133-112 million years ago of what is now Africa and South America.
It was one of the largest crocodile-like reptiles, reaching an average estimate of 9 meters and 3.5 tonnes but estimated to grow up to 9.5 m in body length and weigh up to 4.3 tonnes. It is known from two species, S. imperator from the early Albian Elrhaz Formation of Niger and S. hartti from the Late Hauterivian of north-east Brazil, other material is known from Morocco and Tunisia and possibly Libya and Mali.
The first remains were discovered during several expeditions led by the French paleontologist Albert-Félix de Lapparent, spanning from 1946 to 1959, in the Sahara. These remains were fragments of the skull, vertebrae, teeth, and scutes. In 1964, an almost complete skull was found in Niger by the French CEA, but it was not until 1997 and 2000 that most of its anatomy became known to science when an expedition led by the American paleontologist Paul Sereno discovered six new specimens, including one with about half the skeleton intact and most of the spine.