Enormous Flying Dinosaur Species Discovered in Canada

12 Septembre, 2019, 08:23 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • Enormous Flying Dinosaur Species Discovered in Canada

USC assistant professor Dr. Michael Habib and his team pieced jointly a new genus and species of azhdarchid pterosaur which they coined Cryodrakon boreas, according to an posting revealed Tuesday in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

Cryodrakon boreas lived about 77 million years ago.

Paleontologists had assumed assumed that the fossils belonged to a pterosaur called Quetzalcoatlus northropi, study coauthor Dave Hone, a paleontologist at Queen Mary University of London, told National Geographic.

"It is great that we can identify Cryodrakon as being distinct to Quetzalcoatlus", the other giant pterosaur for which it was initially mistaken, said Hone in a statement.

"As we continue to learn more about the diversity of these critters and their body plans, we're slowly gathering the information that we need to better understand how they moved over 70 million years ago", said Manafzadeh, who wasn't involved with the new research.

"Unfortunately, although some of the Cryodrakon bones described in this paper are beautifully preserved, we don't have both halves of any of the animal's major limb joints - frustratingly common for pterosaur remains - which makes biomechanical analyses hard", said Manafzadeh.

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A handout picture released by the Queen Mary University of London on September 10, 2019, shows a fossil of a neck bone of a full-grown Cryodrakon boreas, a newly discovered species of pterosaur.

Like different pterosaurs, the Cryodrakon had awkward proportions with an extended neck, big wings and a head about three 1/2 occasions the dimensions of its physique.

The specimen uncovered in 1992 belonged to a young Cryodrakon, and it featured a 5-metre-wide wingspan. It's not much smaller than the largest pterosaur ever found, excavated in Germany, which had a wingspan of about 12 metres.

Hone had a "Eureka moment" early on when he found a specific sample of holes within the fossils that appeared distinctive, however it took him and the opposite researchers a number of years extra to cross-check the specimen with pterosaur stays in Mongolia, France and elsewhere to substantiate that this was a brand new species, he mentioned. The fossilized remains are limited, "but the authors have made direct comparisons, and so their size estimates seem reasonable". "But we don't know what that might mean". It had been eaten by a velociraptor-like carnivorous dinosaur that had left tooth marks and even got one of its teeth stuck in one of the bones.

We also asked Hone to comment on the artwork provided with the study's press materials, which feature a Cryodrakon with distinctly Canadian colours on its back and wings.

Now, with access to many Quetzalcoatlus and other pterosaur fossils from around the world, he and paleontologists at the University of Southern California and the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Alberta were able to carefully compare fossils from about a dozen individuals collected at the museum.


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