With their hulking shells, it’s been said that Glyptodon bore a resemblance to turtles. Yet while this may be so, paleontologists say the similarity is completely circumstantial – or, more specifically, the result of two very distinct lineages evolving similar methods to each deal with their environments. Curiously, in fact, the differences are more telling. For instance, glyptodonts didn’t retract their heads into their shells. Instead, each had its own helmet in the form of a bone cap at the top of its skull.
Interestingly, the shell that Nievas discovered displays some signs of damage, although scientists aren’t convinced that it is the result of any past battle. Still, the shell does reveal some other interesting tidbits about this particular Glyptodon.