Extinct crocodile named after Motorhead lead singer 'Lemmy'

An artist's rendering of a Lemmysuchus, a Jurassic-era sea-dwelling crocodile named for Motorhead lead singer Ian "Lemmy" Kilminster.
An artist's rendering of a Lemmysuchus, a Jurassic-era sea-dwelling crocodile named for Motorhead lead singer Ian "Lemmy" Kilminster. PHOTO: AFP/TRUSTEES OF THE NHM, LONDON
The Lemmysuchus was named for Motorhead lead singer Ian "Lemmy" Kilminster (pictured), who died in 2015.
The Lemmysuchus was named for Motorhead lead singer Ian "Lemmy" Kilminster (pictured), who died in 2015.PHOTO: AFP

PARIS (AFP) - A team of music-mad scientists unveiled an extinct, sea-dwelling crocodile from the Jurassic period on Wednesday, and named it in honour of Motorhead lead singer Ian "Lemmy" Kilmister who died in 2015.

"Lemmysuchus" - Latin for Lemmy's crocodile - was about 5.8m long and had a skull of more than a metre - similar to a modern-day salt water crocodile to which it is distantly related.

"It would have been one of the largest coastal predators of its time," researchers from the Natural History Museum said.

"The teeth were large and blunt, perfect for crushing prey such as turtles."

Lemmy's croc was dug up at Peterborough in England in the early 20th century.

But it was recently re-examined and found to have been incorrectly lumped with other sea crocodiles from the area.

Given that it belonged to a unique group, the creature "needed a new scientific name", said the statement.

"Natural History Museum curator Lorna Steel was still mourning the demise of her favourite band, and suggested that it should be named after her musical hero.

"Although Lemmy passed away at the end of 2015, we'd like to think that he would have raised a glass to Lemmysuchus, one of the nastiest sea creatures ever to have inhabited the Earth," the statement quoted Ms Steel as saying.