Scientists have discovered that in ancient North America, the giant ostrich-like dinosaur was one of the largest in the world.
The ornithosaurs of the ancient Laurasia supercontinent were so large that the researchers estimated that one of the individuals they examined weighed more than 800 kilograms.
Scientists identify new fossil May represent two different species of the genus – one smaller and one larger.
By comparing fossil proportions and bone growth patterns, researchers at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science found that larger DinosaurAt least 10 years old, maybe even growing when it dies.
This makes it one of the largest known ornithosaurs to roam the Earth recently Cretaceous Period, 1.01 to 66 million years ago.
before the findings send one Thomas Cullen, a postdoctoral researcher with the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council at Carleton University in Canada, told Sky News that little is known about the creatures that roamed eastern North America because the sediments retained only fossil fragments.
“While we have fairly good records of dinosaurs in western North America, our records from the same period in eastern North America are generally quite poor, with large time gaps, and many species are only known from very fragmentary remains.
“The new fossils from Mississippi we describe here help fill in some of the gaps, providing our first detailed record of ornithosaurs from this period of the Cretaceous period in North America, and enabling us to understand the relationship between here and elsewhere. Biodiversity in some comparisons with locations on Earth”.
Known as “bird-mimicking” dinosaurs, ornithosaurs were ostrich-shaped, with small heads, long arms and strong legs.
The new fossils, including the foot bones, are about 85 million years old, offering a rare glimpse into a little-known time in the evolution of North American dinosaurs.
Ornithosaurs have evolved huge body sizes throughout their evolutionary history.
According to the study, those animals that evolved during the early Cretaceous period (14.5 to 101 million years ago) were generally small, weighing as little as 12 kilograms.
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By the end of this period, a variety of larger species – over 350 kilograms – were known to inhabit Laurasia, which is believed to have split into North America, Greenland, Europe and much of Asia.
The coexistence of medium and large ornithosaurs “indicates broader evidence for the existence of multiple ornithosaurid cohabitation species in the Late Cretaceous ecosystem of Laurasia,” the study authors said.
Deinocheirus mirificus is the largest known dinosaur, belonging to the genus Ornithosaurus, with an estimated weight of over 6,000 kilograms.