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National Geographic News: “‘Nasty’ Little Predator from Dinosaur Dawn Found” Is a tiny dinosaur called Eodromaeus the predecessor to big beasts like T. rex?
Fossil remains of the newly identified dinosaur were recovered in Argentina, where the creature is believed to have lived 230 million years ago. But like many other lesser-known dinosaurs, Eodromaeus did not tower above the landscape nor shake the earth with each step. About the size of a dog, Eodromaeus was only 4 feet (1.3 m) long and half as tall, weighing in at no more than 15 pounds.
The dinosaur’s small stature notwithstanding, the researchers, led by University of Chicago paleontologist Paul Sereno, report on the fossil’s sharp, “needle-like” teeth, long tail, unique pelvis shape, and what are thought to be air sacs in its neck bones. Based on this evidence, the team believes Eodromaeus is the ancestor of more fearsome theropod dinosaurs such as T. rex. Like T. rex, Eodromaeus would have walked on its hind two legs, using its front limbs to claw at food.
Interestingly, Eodromaeus is quite similar to Eoraptor, but secular scientists now believe the latter was the ancestor of large, long-necked, herbivorous dinosaurs (sauropods). “Who could predict that these . . . creatures—both looking quite similar but eating different things—would end up evolving into things as disparate as Diplodocus [a sauropod] and Tyrannosaurus [a theropod]?” Sereno said.
The average size of all dinosaurs has been calculated to be perhaps not much larger than a large sheep or bison. Therefore taking representatives of each dinosaur kind aboard the Ark would not have been a space issue.
Eodromaeus and Eoraptor remind us that dinosaurs weren’t all giants. Many were quite small, and the average size of all dinosaurs has been calculated to be perhaps not much larger than a large sheep or bison. Therefore taking representatives of each dinosaur kind aboard the Ark would not have been a space issue. And rather than being ancestors of the theropod and sauropod groups, these small dinos could have been from a unique created kind that had diverged over time into herbivorous and carnivorous types, showing how all dinosaurs began as vegetarians.
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