Paleonews

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2009-07-17 – USA: Terizinosaur, Nothronychus graffami

Giant Clawed Dinosaur Unearthed in Utah Desert

Jennifer Viegas, Discovery News

July 14, 2009 — A multi-institutional team of scientists this week reports the discovery of a giant new dinosaur in Utah, Nothronychus graffami, which stood 13 feet tall and had nine-inch-long hand claws that looked like scythes.

SLIDE SHOW: Therizinosaur: A Dino With Nine-Inch Nails

 

Its skeleton, described in the current issue of Proceedings of the Royal Society B, represents the most complete remains ever excavated of a therizinosaur, meaning “reaper lizard.” It is one of only three such dinosaurs ever found in North America.

Lead author Lindsay Zanno told Discovery News that therizinosaurs, including the new Utah species, “are unusual in that they have small heads with a keratinous beak at the front of the mouth — the same material as the beak of modern birds — and small leaf-shaped teeth.”

“Their bellies are proportionally enormous, supporting large guts,” added Zanno, who is a researcher in the Department of Geology at The Field Museum. “They have greatly enlarged claws on their hands, short legs and tails, and four-toed feet.”

Therizinosaurs are theropod predatory dinosaurs, a group that includes the legendary Tyrannosaurus rex. The newly discovered 92.5-million-year-old Utah dinosaur was no lightweight either. As Zanno said, “You wouldn’t want to run into this guy in a dark alley.” But its teeth, beak, gut and other anatomical characteristics suggest it was an omnivore that mostly feasted on plants.

Co-author David Gillette, curator of paleontology at the Museum of Northern Arizona, told Discovery News the formidable-looking claws on Nothronychus graffami probably weren’t used to kill other large animals, but instead might have tackled “digging into termite mounds, mucking on the bottom of a lake or pond like a goose or moose, and raking leaves into its mouth from a mangrove forest like a ground sloth.”

To better understand the dietary evolution of theropods, the researchers studied information on 75 other species within this group. They determined therizinosaurs experienced an early evolutionary split from the Maniraptora, which includes modern birds and their closest extinct relatives. One such relative was Velociraptor, a carnivore that probably kicked prey to death with its large hind foot claws.

The new Utah dinosaur therefore suggests that “iconic predators like Velociraptor, one of the dinosaurian villains in the movie Jurassic Park — may have evolved from less fearsome plant-eating ancestors,” according to the scientists.

Since the very meat-loving Velociraptor emerged some 20 million years after plant-chomping Nothronychus graffami, it’s now thought that some dinosaurs might have first been carnivores that evolved into omnivores or herbivores, which re-evolved back into meat-eaters.

Paleontologists aren’t sure why some dinosaur lineages may have see-sawed back and forth with their diets.

“Our current thoughts are that in gaining the ability to eat more than just meat, maniraptorans may have been able to invade new niches in the ecosystem that were unavailable to them before,” Zanno said. “In other words, they may have been able to find a new way of living in the ecosystem and new resources to exploit that gave them an advantage and allowed them to diversify into new forms.”

Aside from what it reveals about dinosaur diets, the new Utah species is significant because of where it was found: in marine sediments that would have been between 60 and 100 miles away from the closest shoreline. The ancient sea is now part of a desert. Merle Graffam, a member of the excavation team, found the dinosaur while searching for sea-dwelling animals. The dinosaur was named after him.

“A big mystery is how this animal — either alive or as a carcass — could get so far out to sea without being torn apart by predators and scavengers,” Gillette said. “This ecosystem had at least five species of plesiosaurs and many sharks and predatory, scavenging fish.”

He added, “Maybe (the dinosaur) was stranded at sea and struggled for a few days before drowning and sinking to the bottom.”

Paul Heinrich, a research associate at the Louisiana Geological Survey, offers another explanation. He thinks such complete dinosaur skeletons recovered in seaways may have rafted out to open water on “floating islands” after storms.

The recovered Utah dinosaur’s remains are now on public display at the Museum of Northern Arizona. The exhibit, Therizinosaur: Mystery of the Sickle-Claw Dinosaur, will close in September before moving to the Arizona Museum of Natural History in Mesa.

http://dsc.discovery.com/news/2009/07/14/sickle-claw-dinosaur.html

luglio 17, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, - Teropodi, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Mesozoic, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , | Lascia un commento

25-05-2009 – Maryland, USA: Chinese dinosaurs at Inner Harbor museum

Maryland Science Center to hatch ‘Chinasaurs’

More than 20 skeletons, other fossils will be on view at Inner Harbor museum

"Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty"

“Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty” features 20 skeletons, all of thunder lizards unearthed on the Chinese mainland. The exhibit opens May 23 and runs through Labor Day at the Maryland Science Center. Tickets are $14.95-$20.95. (Baltimore Sun photo by Kim Hairston / May 19, 2009)

 

If the Maryland Science Center has anything to say about it, Baltimoreans will soon think of China as the home of more than chopsticks, serious ping pong players and the giant panda. By the end of the summer, it should also be known as the land of Mamenchisaurus, Szechuanosaurus and Monolophosaurus, not to mention Tuojiangosaurus and Psittacosaurus.

Through Labor Day, dinosaurs from China will be invading Baltimore. And the folks at the Inner Harbor science center couldn’t be happier.

“Some of these have not been found anywhere else in the world,” says Van Reiner, the center’s president and chief executive.

“The dinosaur aficionados of this area are certainly going to see examples of dinosaurs they won’t see anywhere in the United States.”

Chinasaurs: Dinosaur Dynasty, opening Saturday in 7,000 square feet of exhibit space on the museum’s second floor, features 20 skeletons, all of thunder lizards unearthed on the Chinese mainland. Many have never before been displayed outside their native land (“The Chinese have been very protective of their finds,” Reiner says), and most are of prehistoric animals rarely mentioned in scientific textbooks.

That alone shouldn’t be surprising. The rate of dinosaur discoveries has been climbing exponentially in recent years, says Reiner. “Just when they thought they had identified all the dinosaurs, they hadn’t,” he says. “The estimate is that they’ve identified less than 10 percent.”

What might be surprising to dino-philes, as well as thrilling to even casual fans, is the range of fossils on display – from a 10-inch, astonishingly well-preserved Keichousaurus, looking like someone had carefully placed it between two sheets of rock, to a 70-foot-long skeleton of Mamenchisaurus, a creature with the longest neck of all the dinosaurs (think of a giraffe stretched out low to the ground, and you’ll get the idea).

Some of the names should ring familiar. There’s a Protoceratops, famous for being the first dinosaur whose eggs were unearthed (they actually turned out to be Oviraptor eggs, but that discovery didn’t come until nearly 70 years later). And there are several Velociraptors, the herding predators made famous in Jurassic Park.

But most of the names will prove not only unfamiliar, but tongue-twisting. Some, like Szechuanosaurus, sound like they’d be at home in a Chinese restaurant. Others, like Confuciusornis and Tuojiangosaurus (which translates to “two-river lizard”), readily betray their Asian origins.

There’s a skeleton of a Jinghanosaurus, its head peering around a wall into another display. A feathered Caudipteryx, one of those winged creatures that clearly marks the connection between dinosaurs and birds, is captured in rock as though desperately trying to flap its wings one last time. Among the oddest-looking beasts on display is Pachycephalosaur, a relatively small dinosaur whose gigantic skull resembles a football helmet. For the record, scientists don’t believe the creatures head-butted one another, but rather that they would smack each other on the sides of the heads.

And if any of those names give you trouble, try asking around. Dino-philes are usually pretty good with their nomenclature.

“Every few years, you get a new generation of dinosaur fans,” says Brenda Lewis, the science center’s acting director of exhibits. “You get these 3- or 4-year-olds who can’t talk properly, but they can pronounce the names of every dinosaur they see.”

If you go

Chinasaurs opens Saturday at the Maryland Science Center, 601 Light St. Tickets are $14.95-$20.95. Call 410-685-5225 or go to mdsci.org.

maggio 25, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, An. Vertebrates, Mostre & Fiere, Musei, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-05-20 – Montana, USA: Sentiero dei Dinosauri (Dinosaur Trail)

Dinosaur Trail (Montana): il Sentiero dei Dinosauri compie 5 anni

Ci sono voluti almeno 150 milioni d’anni ed oggi il Dinosaur Trail nel Montana, celebra il suo quinto anniversario enumerando ben 15 località archeologiche, con musei e siti paleontologici, in ben 12 comunità dell’est e del centro del Montana.

Il Montana Dinosaur Trail è un percorso adatto a famiglie con bambini e ad appassionati di paleontologia: offre la possibilità di ammirare, toccare ed imparare tutto il mondo fossile esistente nel Montana, risalente ad oltre 75 fino a 150 milioni d’anni fa.

Ogni località lungo il Dinosaur Trail dispone di mostre con fossili o repliche di dinosauri trovati nelle specifiche zone. Tra gli esemplari, anche Leonardo – un dinosauro mummia – uno dei meglio conservati al mondo, in località Malta; il Peck Rex uno scheletro intero originale del famoso T-Rex a Fort Peck; la più grande collezione di dinosauri ritrovati negli Stati Uniti, presso la località di Bozeman, ed infine le prime ossa del cucciolo di dinosauro del Nord America a Bynum e lo scheletro di Anatotitan in mostra a Ekalala.

Nel 2008 almeno 267.000 turisti hanno incluso il Dinosaur Trail nel loro viaggio nel Montana provando l’esperienza di 15 siti ben strutturati. Un terzo di questi visitatori sono internazionali. Questo a riprova che il Dinosaur Trail è veramente un’attrattiva eccezionale!

Ma la cosa ancora più intrigante è la possibilità di acquistare un Montana Dinosaur Trail Prehistoric Passport per soli 5 $, acquistabile anche direttamente nel sito www.mtdinotrail.org. Solo 2 $ il costo aggiuntivo con ordine in internet.

Le attrattive e le località del DinoTrail:
Blaine County Museum, Chinook
Carter County Museum, Ekalaka
Fort Peck Field Station of Paleontology, Fort Peck
Fort Peck Interpretive Center, Fort Peck
Garfield County Museum, Jordan
Great Plains Dinosaur Museum and Field Station, Malta
H. Earl Clack Memorial Museum, Havre
Makoshika Dinosaur Museum, Glendive
Makoshika State Park, Glendive
Museum of the Rockies, Bozeman
Old Trail Museum, Choteau
Phillips County Museum, Malta
Rudyard Depot Museum, Rudyard
Two Medicine Dinosaur Center, Bynum
Upper Musselshell Museum, Harlowton

fonte: link

maggio 20, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Lang. - Italiano, Mesozoic, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-05-10 – Utah, USA: ritrovata una tartaruga fossile incinta (fossil pregnant turtle)

Rare prehistoric pregnant turtle found in Utah

At least three eggs are visible from the outside of the fossil, and Montana State University researchers this week have been studying images taken from a CT scan in search of others inside.

Montana State graduate student Michael Knell says the turtle was probably about a week from laying her eggs when she died and became entombed for millions of years in sandstone.

The fossil was found in 2006 in a remote part of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The eggs weren’t discovered until after it sat in storage for two years and was being re-examined by a volunteer.

This image provided Montana State University shows CT technician, Tanya Spence preparing to run a 75 million-year-old turtle fossil through a CT scanner at Deaconess Hospital in Bozeman, Mont. (AP Photo/Montana State University, Kelly Gorham)

This image provided Montana State University shows CT technician, Tanya Spence preparing to run a 75 million-year-old turtle fossil through a CT scanner at Deaconess Hospital in Bozeman, Mont. (AP Photo/Montana State University, Kelly Gorham)

maggio 10, 2009 Pubblicato da | - Rettili, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Articolo sc. di riferimento, Mesozoic, P - Preservazione eccezionale, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia, X - Nature | , , , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-04-16 – Philadelphia, USA: Hadrosaurus foulkii, America’s “first dinosaur” on display

America’s “first dinosaur” on display in Philadelphia until May 3


Hadrosaurus by Joseph Smit (1836-1929) from Nebula
to Man, 1905 England
http://www.copyrightexpired.com/earlyimage/prehistoriclifebeforekt/

Hadrosaurus foulkii doesn’t have the name recognition of a Tyrannosaurus rex, but this dinosaur made a profound impact on our view of dinosaurs today. Hadrosaurus is a hometown hero with literally deep roots in the Philadelphia area. Discovered in nearby Haddonfield New Jersey and first displayed at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, Hadrosaurus foulkii led the migration of dinosaurs out of the ground, on display in museums, and into our imaginations.

Prior to the Civil War, little was known about the dinosaurs. In the summer of 1858, Philadelphia lawyer William Parker Foulke vacationed in Haddonfield New Jersey. While searching for fossils, Foulke discovered a collection of gigantic bones.

Foulke brought these bones to the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, where they were examined by museum curator Joseph Leidy. As a professor of anatomy, Leidy recognized that the bones came from an unknown creature. At this time, the only evidence of dinosaurs came from a mismatched collection of bones and teeth.

The collection of bones discovered in Haddonfield New Jersey represented the most complete dinosaur skeleton of the time. Leidy named the newly discovered dinosaur, Hadrosaurus foulkii. The genus Hadrosaurus means “bulky lizard.”The species name foulkii was provided to honor William Parker Foulke.

10 years later, New York artist Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins assembled the bones into a mounted skeleton for the Academy. The completed skeleton debuted in November 1868, the first display of its kind. Today dinosaur skeletons are key attractions at natural history museums around the world.

The discovery of thousands of dinosaur fossils in the time since Hadrosaurus was first found on a farm in New Jersey, contributes to a more accurate representation of the dinosaur that was possible in 1868. You can view the reconstruction of Hadrosaurus foulkii on display at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia until May 3, 2009.

aprile 16, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Mostre & Fiere, Musei, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-04-02 – New York, USA: Scheletro di dinosauro non venduto all`asta (dino skeleton unsold)

 Complete dino skeleton doesn’t sell at NY auction

In this photo released by the I.M. Chait Gallery, a complete 150-million-year-old dinosaur skeleton, top right, joins other fossils prior to an auction of prehistoric relics in New York, Saturday, March 21, 2009. The I.M. Chait Gallery of Beverly Hills, Calif., will offer it and other items such as a 7-foot-tall complete skeleton of a 20,000-year-old juvenile wooly mammoth, and the fossilized skeleton of 20-foot-long marine lizard at a New York auction later that day. (AP Photo/I.M. Chait Gallery, Josh Chait)

In this photo released by the I.M. Chait Gallery, a complete 150-million-year-old dinosaur skeleton, top right, joins other fossils prior to an auction of prehistoric relics in New York, Saturday, March 21, 2009. The I.M. Chait Gallery of Beverly Hills, Calif., will offer it and other items such as a 7-foot-tall complete skeleton of a 20,000-year-old juvenile wooly mammoth, and the fossilized skeleton of 20-foot-long marine lizard at a New York auction later that day. (AP Photo/I.M. Chait Gallery, Josh Chait)

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York gallery says a 150-million-year-old complete skeleton of a dinosaur has failed to sell at auction.

Josh Chait (CHATE’) of I.M. Chait Gallery/Auctioneers says two museums interested in the fossil failed to meet the minimum price of nearly $300,000 during the auction Saturday. He declined to identify the two parties.

Chait says the gallery is still trying broker a deal to sell the 9-foot-long dryosaurus fossil to a museum. Dryosauruses were two-footed, plant-eating creatures.

The auction also included the 7-foot-tall complete skeleton of a 20,000-year-old, juvenile wooly mammoth, and the fossilized skeleton of 20-foot-long marine lizard. Unidentified private collectors bought the mammoth fossil for $55,000 and the lizard fossil for $67,000.

___

On The Net:

I.M. Chait Gallery, http://www.chait.com/

Western Paleontological, http://www.westernpaleolabs.com/

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

NEW YORK (AP) — A bit of Jurassic Park is going on sale with a 150-million-year-old complete skeleton of a dinosaur going on the auction block in New York.

The I.M. Chait Gallery says the fossil of the 9-foot-long dryosaurus dating from the Jurassic era is one of only two of its kind in the world. The gallery said it could bring up to $500,000 at Saturday’s auction.

Gallery operator Josh Chait says the fossil was taken from private land in Wyoming in 1993 and is being sold by Utah-based Western Paleontological Laboratories.

The auction also included the 7-foot-tall complete skeleton of a 20,000-year-old, juvenile wooly mammoth, and the fossilized skeleton of 20-foot-long marine lizard.

 source: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hYSWYIeUfch_nCqxmXRnxvfHxRfAD972M74G0

Other links:

9-foot dinosaur skeleton is no-sale at auction

CNN - ‎22-mar-2009‎
Fossils including dinosaur skeletons are on display at the IM Chait Gallery on Saturday. Auctioneers at the IM Chait Gallery had hoped the

aprile 2, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, An. Vertebrates, Aste, Collezionismo, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-02-18 – Los Angeles, Usa: trovato scheletro di Mammuth (Mammoth)

Paleontologia: Usa, scheletro mammuth trovato a Los Angeles

(ANSA) – WASHINGTON, 18 feb – Lo scheletro quasi completo di mammuth risalente tra i 10mila e i 40mila anni fa e´ stato trovato nel sottosuolo di Los Angeles.A scoprirlo sono stati gli operai che stavano lavorando alla costruzione di alcuni garage sotterranei. ´Entusiasmante´ e´ stata definita da archeologi e paleontologi la scoperta. Assieme allo scheletro di mammuth, ribattezzato ´Zed´, sono stati trovati fossili ben conservati di tartarughe, serpenti, tronchi d´albero, pesci e altre specie.
———————————————————————————–

CharlotteObserver.com

A rare prehistoric mammoth fossil found in Los Angeles
WCBD - 8 ore fa
They call him “Zed,“ a nearly intact mammoth just discovered among a rare new prehistoric find at the world famous La Brea tar pits in Los Angeles.
Nearly intact mammoth skeleton a rare find CNN International
New, Amazing Fossil Finds @ La Brea Tar Pits KNX1070
RedOrbit - Associated Content - Science Daily (press release) - The Associated Press
e altri 356 articoli simili »

febbraio 18, 2009 Pubblicato da | - Mammiferi, America Northern, An. Vertebrates, Cenozoic, Curiosità, Lang. - Italiano, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , | Lascia un commento

2009-01-16 – USA officially designated state dinosaurs

While it seemsdefinitive to change the name of Texas official state dinosaur from

take a look to other officially designated state dinosaurs:

  • Colorado: Stegosaurus
  • District of Columbia: Capitalsaurus
  • Maryland: Astrodon johnstoni
  • Missouri: Hypsibema missouriensis
  • New Jersey: Hadrosaurus foulkii
  • Wyoming: Triceratops

Abot Texas see also

gennaio 16, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, 1 Cretaceo, America Northern, Articolo sc. di riferimento, Curiosità, FREE ACCESS, Mesozoic, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , | Lascia un commento

2009-01-15 – New Mexico, USA: Students discover Triassic Reptiles

Students discover possible dinosaur fossil

A Mesalands Community College paleontology class has found a fossil that could be of a new form of Triassic reptile at an eastern New Mexico dig site.

“I think that we have found a new form of aetosaurs,” said Axel Hungerbuehler, professor of Paleontology at Mesalands Community College.

The aetosaur, or eagle lizard, fossils were among numerous fossils excavated at a site in the Redonda formation in Quay County.

Aetosaurs, a heavily armored plant-eater that lived in the Triassic period an estimated 200 Million years ago, are identified by the armor plating on their back and sides. Each of the plates has a distinct pattern and shape, Hungerbuehler said.

“The analysis of the armor plates found at the dig site indicates that we have found a new form of aetosaur,” Hungerbuehler said.

In addition to the plates, they have identified bones of the internal skeleton of an aetosaur, including parts of the hip and several leg bones. So far, however, no complete articulated skeletons have been excavated from the site, Hungerbuehler said.

Several more dinosaur-like elements, including another hip bone (pubis) and several hollow limb bones, were also recovered, Hungerbuehler said.

“These bones are not from the same individual dinosaur that was found in 2007,” Hungerbuehler said. “They could be fossils of a similar type of dinosaur.”

In 2007 a field class found  a hip bone (ilium) of an un-named primitive dinosaur that was collected at the Redonda Formation site.

“We have not done enough examination of the fossil to determine if it is a new and previously undiscovered type of primitive dinosaur,” Hungerbuehler said. “A definite identification will be done once these fossils have been freed from their rocky host and they can be carefully cleaned.”

 This all started during the summer of 2006, when three field classes and several volunteers of Mesalands Community College’s Dinosaur Museum started excavating bones of reptiles at the current dig site.

Hungerbuehler said an abundance of fossils were found in red and green siltstones, and sandstones of the Upper Triassic estimated to be 200 million years old. To date, about 250 field numbers have been recorded.

 At the site they have found that bones occur in two different settings.
• In coarser layers of sandstones, bones are evenly distributed and show signs like breaking and abrasion, indicating they have been washed together by water currents.
• In red, fine-grained siltstones, undamaged bones have been found in spots of dense concentrations. These probably represent skeletons that fell apart at the spot.
Many of the bones still await preparation.

Items identified from the records kept in the field and the bones already freed from the rock in Mesalands Community College’s Dinosaur Museum Lab include:
• Phytosaurs — semiaquatic crocodile-like reptiles
Two phytosaur skulls and parts of a large lower jaw were recovered, plus numerous bones of the body.
• Large carnivorous reptile
A large reptile, perhaps,  a rauisuchian (Rau’s crocodiles) which includes the largest predators in the Late Triassic, is represented by the tip of a lower jaw. The element is currently under study by students at Mesalands to confirm the identity.

source: http://www.pntonline.com/news/new_16013___article.html/fossil_mexico.html 

gennaio 15, 2009 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, - Rettili, 3 Triassico, America Northern, Mesozoic, P - Ritrovamenti fossili, Paleontology / Paleontologia | , , , , , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

2008-12-11 – Farmington, USA: Mostra: “Baby Dinosaurs” (Dinosaurs, Children’s Museum & Science Center)

Going prehistoric: Interactive “Baby Dinosaurs” exhibit opens Saturday

By Steve Lynn The Daily Times

dicembre 11, 2008 Pubblicato da | - R. Dinosauri, America Northern, Mostre & Fiere, Musei, Paleontology / Paleontologia, Places | , , , , , , , | Lascia un commento

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