New dinosaur looks like odd mix of duck, croc, ostrich, swan

WASHINGTON — With a invoice like a duck however tooth like a croc’s, a swanlike neck and killer claws, a brand new dinosaur species uncovered by scientists seems like one thing Dr. Seuss might have dreamed up.

It additionally had flippers like a penguin, and whereas it walked like an ostrich it might additionally swim. That is the primary time swimming potential has been proven for a two-legged, meat-consuming dinosaur.

The tiny creature, solely about 18 inches tall, roamed seventy five million years in the past in what’s now Mongolia. Its full curled-up skeleton was present in a sandstone rock.

“It is such a peculiar animal,” stated Dennis Voeten, a paleontology researcher at Palacky College within the Czech Republic. “It combines totally different elements we knew from different teams into this one small animal.”

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In a research launched Wednesday by the journal Nature , Voeten and coauthors named it Halszkaraptor escuilliei or “Halszka” after the late Polish paleontologist Halszka Osmolska.

Seen in a 3D rendering of the fossil, the dinosaur roamed 75 million years ago in what is now Mongolia.

Seen in a 3D rendering of the fossil, the dinosaur roamed seventy five million years in the past in what’s now Mongolia.

(Paul Tafforeau/ESRF by way of AP)

Paleontologist Kristi Curry Rogers of Macalester School in St. Paul, Minnesota, who did not take part within the research, referred to as it “a reasonably loopy chimera: a swan neck and dinosaur physique, however with a mouthful of tiny tooth and arms and ft that appear to be they is perhaps good for swimming.”

Its mashup physique let it run and hunt on the bottom and fish in recent water, stated research co-writer Paul Tafforeau. He is a paleontologist on the ESRF , often known as the European Synchrotron in Grenoble, France, a strong X-ray generator the place quite a few checks have been made on the fossil.

Lead writer Andrea Cau, a paleontologist on the Geological Museum Capellini in Bologna, Italy, stated he was at first extremely suspicious concerning the fossil’s authenticity, each due to its look and the truth that the rock containing the skeleton had been smuggled out of Mongolia and left in a personal collector’s palms.

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“I requested myself, ‘Is that this an actual, pure skeleton, or an artifact, a chimera? If this can be a pretend, how might I reveal it?'” Cau stated in an e mail. “Assuming it was a pretend as an alternative of beginning assuming that the fossil is real was probably the most applicable strategy to begin the investigation…

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