|“||A vicious, nocturnal hunter. A Therocephalian called Euchambersia; half mammal, half reptile.||„|
|— Allen, describing Euchambersia|
Euchambersia is a genus of therocephalian therapsid that originated during the Late Permian Era in what is now Africa. Related both to gorgonopsids and cynodonts, these ancient, venomous, carnivorous mammal-like reptiles possessed a venom more potent than that of a modern-day black mamba.
In the Series 1 finale "Dawn of the Mesozoic" a number of four Euchambersia was brought back to the park from the Early Triassic, around 248 million years ago. They reside in a small alpine-like enclosure.
Era & DiscoveryEdit
Euchambersia lived during the Permian and Triassic periods 280–230 million years ago. It often hunted Lystrosaurus. The type specimen of Euchambersia was found by Robert Broom on the South African farm of Vanwyksfontein, owned by a Mr. Greathead, near the town of Norvalspont. It consists of a single, distorted skull, cataloged as NHMUK R5696, which was described by Broom in 1931.
Euchambersia were quadrupedal creatures that measured 5–8 feet (1.6–2.5 m) long and were anatomically similar to Gorgonopsids, albeit with stubbier, thicker legs and had a sleek, slender, and smaller body. Its jaws were lined with sharp fangs which were connected to venom glands. It had powerful eyes with strong eyesight, especially in the dark.
They possessed large skulls, which were ridged from the neck, and had a broad, blunt snout with long, straight canines. Euchambersia also had a grooved ridge inside their mouth for injecting venom into their prey. When placid, Euchamberisa was slow-moving but could give surprising bouts of speed and strength when closing in on prey.
Euchambersia was unique compared to other animals from its time as it was venomous. Its venom was more potent than the deadliest snakes on Earth today, such as a Black Mamba. As such, their venom was highly fast-acting and toxic on animals as well as humans; the poisoned bite would begin to fester almost immediately, and the victim's body would grow weaker and weaker over a matter of seconds until they were paralyzed by the venom's effects, rendering them helpless to escape Euchambersia.
If a bitten victim was found before they'd been fully paralyzed, the venom's spread could be halted by applying salt to the wound, saving the prey's life and giving them a chance at making a full recovery. With such as lethal venom, Euchambersia would not need to fight their prey. When hunting, they simply bite their victims and then ran off until the venom did its job. Once the venom entered the victim's bloodstream, the animal would be paralyzed and die within minutes.
Behavior & TraitsEdit
Euchambersia lived together in large family groups consisting of dozens of members, although a rare few loners could apparently stray off from the main group. When not hunting, they spent most of their time lounging about and sleeping, although they could quickly turn deadly if any other animals disturbed them. Highly aggressive and vicious nocturnal predators, Euchambersia hunted in packs. Their attacks were swift and at first, appeared unsuccessful, but these predators had a secret weapon: a venomous bite, as shown when one kills a Lystrosaurus.
When they came across other animals, they would pursue it almost relentlessly until they closed in, at which point they would pounce upon and attack their prey with their venomous bite. However, only one member would make the attack as a group tackle wouldn't be necessary. Once the creature mortally wounded their victim, the Euchambersia would wait until their prey succumbed to their injuries and would then feast.