This charming tale, “Crocodiles swam the Atlantic to reach America” should be true, but some are undecided.
Michael Marshall explains for New Scientist (11 May 2011), “Millions of years before Vikings crossed the Atlantic, crocodiles swam thousands of kilometres from Africa to colonise the Americas,”
… all four American species are most closely related to the Nile crocodiles of east Africa, and must have split away roughly 7 million years ago, long after Africa and South America began drifting apart 130 million years ago. By 7 million years ago, over 2800 kilometres of ocean lay between the two continents.
And no rest stops?
In theory, as the article explains, a single female could swim the ocean and lay eggs on the other side. But the story inevitably reminds us of many claims that humans crossed the Atlantic from Europe long before the Age of Exploration (1400 on). All legend? No, some are true, in substance, like the saga of Eric the Red and Leif the Lucky.
Question: How useful is genome sequencing, compared to paleontology or archaeology, as evidnce for history?