Navigation Links
Dinosaur fossil: Even specialized predators didn't turn down free meals
Date:3/6/2012

Scientists have discovered a bone from a pterosaur (giant flying reptile or 'pterodactyl') in the guts of the skeletal remains of a Velociraptor (small predatory theropod dinosaur) that lived in the Gobi Desert in Mongolia some 75 million years ago.

The findings published online in Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, and Palaeoecology, support the idea that Velociraptor, a carnivore with a specialised sickle shaped slashing talon on the second toe of each foot and large grasping hands, would also scavenge on available carcasses rather than turn down a free meal.

They also indicate that small non-avian dinosaurs were capable of consuming relatively large bones, something that we see in modern crocodiles.

The international research team involved scientists from University College Dublin, Ireland; the National Museum of Nature and Science, Tokyo, Japan; the Museum of Natural Sciences, Okayama, Japan; and the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, Ulaanbaatr, Mongolia.

"It would be difficult and probably even dangerous for the small theropod dinosaur to target a pterosaur with a wingspan of 2 metres or more, unless the pterosaur was already ill or injured," says Dr David Hone, one of the co-authors of the study, who was based at the UCD School of Biology and Environmental Sciences, University College Dublin, Ireland, at the time of the analysis.

"So the pterosaur bone we've identified in the gut of the Velociraptor was most likely scavenged from a carcass rather than the result of a predatory kill."

The fossil, originally recovered from the Gobi Desert in 1994, shows the well preserved 75 mm long pterosaur bone lodged in the upper part of the Velociraptor ribcage where its stomach would have been.

"The surface of the bone is smooth and in good condition, with no unusual traces of marks or deformation that could be attributed to digestive acids," says Dr Hone.

"So it's likely that the Velociraptor itself died not long after ingesting the bone."

Further analysis of the skeletal remains of the Velociraptor showed that it was carrying, or recovering from, an injury to its ribs when it died.

This is the first time that bones from a pterosaur have been uncovered as gut contents from dinosaur remains.


'/>"/>

Contact: Dominic Martella
dominic.martella@ucd.ie
353-872-959-118
University College Dublin
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Polysternon isonae, a new species of turtle that lived with dinosaurs in Isona
2. Plant-eating dinosaur discovered in Antarctica
3. Dinosaurs with killer claws yield new theory about flight
4. New Montana State University, Pennsylvania study reveals North Americas biggest dinosaur
5. New horned dinosaur announced nearly 100 years after discovery
6. Skin bones helped large dinosaurs survive, new study says
7. Paleontologist describes large nest of juvenile dinosaurs, first of their genus ever found
8. Super-sized muscle made twin-horned dinosaur a speedster
9. Rebuilding the head of an armoured dinosaur
10. Tree resin captures evolution of feathers on dinosaurs and birds
11. Newborn dinosaur discovered in Maryland
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:11/30/2016)... Nov. 30, 2016 Not many of us realize that we spend ? ... so we need to do it well. Inadequate sleep levels have been found to ... stroke, diabetes, and even cancer. Maybe now is the best time to ... help them to manage their sleep quality? Continue Reading ... ...
(Date:11/29/2016)... -- Nearly one billion matches per second with DERMALOG,s high-speed ... ... DERMALOG is Germany's largest Multi-Biometric supplier: ... (PRNewsFoto/DERMALOG Identification Systems) ... is Germany's largest Multi-Biometric supplier: The company's Fingerprint Identification System is part ...
(Date:11/22/2016)...   MedNet Solutions , an innovative SaaS-based eClinical ... research, is pleased to announce that the company has ... Sciences Awards as "Most Outstanding in eClinical Solutions" ... of recognition and growth for MedNet, which has effectively ... iMedNet ™ , MedNet,s flagship eClinical ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/7/2016)... 2016  Biocom, the association for the California ... passage of 21 st Century Cures legislation in Congress. ... a 392-26 vote and in the Senate on December 7 ... Joe Panetta , president & CEO of Biocom: ... to millions of patients around the world. The measure culminates ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... Texas , Dec. 7, 2016  Genprex, ... of revolutionary immunogene therapy treatments, today announced that ... practice within a leading strategic communications and advisory ... communications program. The program will combine investor relations, ... objective of raising the profile of Genprex and ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... -- Regen BioPharma Inc. (OTCQB: RGBPP) In a ... a team of scientists in Guangzhou, China ... expression of NR2F6 in patients with early cervical cancer correlates ... cervical cancer tissue as well as in the normal tissue ... interesting study and the first that I am aware of ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... PA (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... website, http://www.autoreactors.com and online shopping cart. The new website has been ... functionality. These essential digital components allow customers to access detailed product information, read ...
Breaking Biology Technology: