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Bus-Sized Dino Comes With a Surprise

It suggests migration from South America, not Asia

(Newser) - An Australian sheep farmer has discovered a beast far bigger than he's ever handled—along with new clues as to how dinosaurs ended up Down Under. Paleontologists, together with dinosaur enthusiast/sheep farmer David Elliot, say they've uncovered a new monster of a dinosaur belonging to the titanosaur subgroup... More »

One of Most Complete T. Rex Skulls Ever Arrives at Museum

'An iconic specimen'

(Newser) - It may look like a giant rock right now, but inside is what dinosaur expert Jack Horner calls "one of the most significant" Tyrannosaurus rex specimens ever found, the AP reports. According to the Seattle Times , a 2,500-pound, plaster-encased lump of dirt and rock arrived at the Burke... More »

What Roar? Some Dinosaurs Likely Cooed

They perhaps made 'closed-mouth vocalizations' like birds

(Newser) - Dinosaurs may have been much more like modern birds than we knew—and not just because some had feathers . A new study suggests that mighty dinosaurs of yore didn't roar, contrary to every dinosaur movie you've ever seen. Instead, they made a decidedly less scary sound called a... More »

Asteroid That Killed Dinosaurs Wiped Out Most Mammals, Too

Only about 7% survived, says study

(Newser) - The asteroid that took out the dinosaurs nearly claimed the planet's mammals, too. Researchers at the UK's Milner Centre for Evolution report in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology that 93% of mammals were wiped out around the same time, far more than originally thought. And those that did... More »

T. Rex May Have Had Lips to Hide Its Ferocious Teeth

That goes against the popular image of the dinosaur in 'Jurassic Park' and elsewhere

(Newser) - The image of a "ferocious-looking" Tyrannosaurus rex with a "permanent smile" of huge protruding teeth is taking a hit thanks to one Canadian paleontologist, Live Science reports. Robert Reisz says the T. rex, along with other theropods, actually had scaly lips covering its teeth. “When we see... More »

Dinos Were Going Downhill Even Before Asteroid Hit

Decline started tens of millions of years earlier, study says

(Newser) - Dinosaurs were already past their prime when a huge asteroid finished them off 66 million years ago, according to Universities of Reading and Bristol researchers who say their work "changes our understanding of the fate of these mighty creatures." They write in the Proceedings of the National Academy ... More »

Scientists Grow Chickens With Dinosaur Legs

'With one small modification, millions of years of evolution can be undone'

(Newser) - Scientists—presumably so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think whether they should—have grown chickens with dinosaur legs, Phys.org reports. More accurately, a team at the University of Chile grew chicken embryos with dinosaur-like fibulas. In modern birds, the fibula is shorter... More »

For T. Rex, Size Originally Didn't Matter

Horse-sized ancestor reveals evolutionary path, and intellect came before size

(Newser) - Though one of the most well-known dinosaurs, Tyrannosaurus rex is actually somewhat of a mystery, having suddenly emerged as a fearsome beast some 80 million years ago. As a 20-million-year gap in the fossil record preceded T. rex, paleontologists have known little about its evolutionary path—until now. The discovery... More »

Dinosaurs' Last Moments Found—Behind a Lowe's?

Weirdly, this quarry is open to the public

(Newser) - Amateur enthusiasts and kids on field trips have been flocking to a New Jersey quarry pit for years to dig up some of its many prehistoric fossils. Incredibly, this pit may also be the only known dinosaur graveyard dating back to their destruction 66 million years ago, the New York ... More »

Awesome Dinosaur Discovery: They Danced

Specifically, the guys did to woo females, says study

(Newser) - It must have been an amazing sight: Paleontologists now say that dinosaurs danced—with gusto. More specifically, they think that some male dinosaurs did so as part of a mating display to woo females, study authors say in a post at Phys.org . The evidence? Telltale scrape marks from claws... More »

Nicolas Cage Returns Stolen Dinosaur Skull

He bought the fossil, smuggled from Mongolia, for $276K

(Newser) - Remember that dinosaur skull in Nicolas Cage's collection? It's now in the hands of US authorities who say it was stolen from Mongolia. Cage isn't accused of stealing the Tyrannosaurus bataar skull himself; his publicist says he bought it from a Beverly Hills gallery in March 2007... More »

One of the Biggest Raptors Found in South Dakota

Meet Dakotaraptor

(Newser) - Archaeologists have found one of the biggest raptors ever, one that used to roam what is now Hell Creek in South Dakota. Hence, the name: Dakotaraptor. Discover reports that this beast was about 16 feet long with sickle-like claws of nearly 10 inches, making it one of the largest raptors... More »

Rare Dino Skull Excavated in Most Unusual Way

It was the only way out for Pentaceratops remains

(Newser) - This was something that had never been seen before—the full skeletal remains of a baby Pentaceratops, a plant-eating dinosaur with large horns that once roamed what's now North America tens of millions of years ago. The fossils first caught the attention of paleontologists with the New Mexico Museum... More »

Scientists Finally Stop Fighting About Dinosaur Deaths

Study says asteroid and volcanos killed the dinosaurs

(Newser) - After 35 years of intense scholarly debate—and probably some name calling—scientists have agreed to compromise: Both a giant asteroid and massive volcanic eruptions were responsible for killing off the dinosaurs 66 million years ago. Time reports this agreement comes after researchers used a new technique to more precisely... More »

T. Rex Had Vicious Teeth, the Better to Shred You With

This feature is only seen in the Komodo dragon today

(Newser) - The Komodo dragon is the only known creature on the planet today to boast teeth that are serrated, like a jagged-edged steak knife. But now researchers have discovered that the mighty T. rex not only sported serrated teeth, but also secret folds hidden toward the bottom of those teeth that... More »

Dinos Issued a Climate Warning 215M Years Ago

Sauropods avoided volatile tropics in Triassic

(Newser) - Scientists have long been baffled by a lack of Triassic period fossils from large, herbivorous dinosaurs known as sauropods near the equator. A new study offers some illumination: It suggests a hot, unpredictable climate and high carbon dioxide levels kept some of the world's first dinosaurs away—and may... More »

In 'Crap' Dinosaur Fossils, Scientists Strike Gold

If 75M-year-old soft tissue has survived, could DNA, too?

(Newser) - The fossils may be in such poor shape that scientists are calling them "crap," but the 75-million-year-old fragments are golden in another sense. A theropod claw, triceratops-like toe bone, and duck-billed dinosaur limb and ankle bones first unearthed in Canada 100 years ago appear to retain soft tissue,... More »

Scientists Find First Evidence of Dinosaurs in Wash. State

80M-year-old femur belonged to a theropod

(Newser) - It appears that around 80 million years ago, a theropod dinosaur roughly the size of a transit bus died near the sea and was jostled by waves, and at some point part of its femur became wedged into a rocky outcrop alongside clam fossils in Washington state's San Juan... More »

Scientists Grow Chicken Embryos With Dino Snouts

As part of an effort to learn about beak evolution

(Newser) - It sounds straight out of Jurassic Park: Researchers have successfully created chicken embryos with what LiveScience frames as Velociraptor-like snouts. It's an end that has its beginning in a bird-dino quandary described by Carl Zimmer at the New York Times : "Even the most exquisitely preserved fossil can't... More »

Dinosaur-Age Cockroach Was Fearsome Predator

100M-year-old insect also had swiveling head, took flight

(Newser) - A mean-looking cockroach that lived alongside the dinosaurs had a long neck, swiveling head, and elongated legs that enabled it to surprise prey, New Scientist reports via Gizmodo . Found embedded in amber in Myanmar, the 100-million-year-old insect resembles a cross between a roach, a crane fly, and a praying mantis:... More »

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