Nav: Home

Giant dinosaurs hatched with adult-like proportions

April 21, 2016

Analysis of a new dinosaur fossil suggests that the largest species ever known to walk the Earth was born with adult-like proportions, perhaps allowing it to be more independent than some other species of dinosaur. While several fossils of the ginormous Rapetosaurus krausei have been analyzed to date, very little is known about this species around the time of hatching. R. krausei is a type of titanosaur, the largest land vertebrates to have evolved. It is estimated to have reached lengths of about 15 meters (49 feet), but even these giants had to start small. Analysis of the new fossil by Kristina Curry-Rogers et al. suggests that the youngster they studied, who died (likely from starvation) between the age of 39 and 77 days, weighed roughly 3.4 kilograms (kg) when it hatched. By the end of its brief life, it had reached a mass of roughly 40 kg and was 35 centimeters tall at the hip. The researchers used bone histology and x-ray computed tomography to understand its growth pattern. Based on the compactness of its bones, the authors say that this dinosaur's limbs likely remained similar in shape throughout its life. This is in contrast to other dinosaur groups, such as theropods and ornithischians, whose limb proportions are different at birth than adulthood; evidence suggests that, in these latter cases, parental care was important. Therefore, the authors propose that R. krausei infants may have been relatively independent after birth, compared to other species.
-end-


American Association for the Advancement of Science

Related Dinosaur Articles:

Japan's largest complete dinosaur skeleton discovered
The complete skeleton of an eight-meter-long dinosaur has been unearthed from marine deposits dating back 72 million years at Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, making it the largest dinosaur skeleton ever found in Japan, according to researchers.
First baby of a gigantic Oviraptor-like dinosaur belongs to a new species
First baby of a gigantic Oviraptor-like dinosaur belongs to a new species.
'Last African dinosaur' discovered in Moroccan mine
One of the last dinosaurs living in Africa before their extinction 66 million years ago has been discovered in a phosphate mine in northern Morocco.
Headless dinosaur reunited with its skull, one century later
Researchers at the University of Alberta have matched the headless skeleton to a Corythosaurus skull from the university's Paleontology Museum that had been collected in 1920 by George Sternberg to the headless dinosaur.
What can we learn from dinosaur proteins?
Researchers recently confirmed it is possible to extract proteins from 80-million-year-old dinosaur bones.
80-million-year-old dinosaur collagen confirmed
Utilizing the most rigorous testing methods to date, researchers from North Carolina State University have isolated additional collagen peptides from an 80-million-year-old Brachylophosaurus.
Our ancestors evolved faster after dinosaur extinction
Our ancestors evolved three times faster in the 10 million years after the extinction of the dinosaurs than in the previous 80 million years, according to UCL researchers.
New species of horned dinosaur with a spiked 'shield'
A chance fossil discovery in Montana a decade ago has led to the identification of an audacious new species of horned dinosaur, Spiclypeus shipporum, according to a study published May 18, 2016, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Jordan Mallon, from the Canadian Museum of Nature, Canada, and colleagues.
EARTH: Making tracks through the dinosaur diamond
EARTH Magazine travels through time to meet the major players of the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous -- from sauropods and theropods to protomammals -- that created the rich tapestry of life in this region millions of years ago.
Canuckosaur! First Canadian 'dinosaur' becomes Dimetrodon borealis
A 'dinosaur' fossil originally discovered on Prince Edward Island has been shown to have steak knife-like teeth, and researchers from U of T Mississauga, Carleton University and the Royal Ontario Museum have changed its name to Dimetrodon borealis -- marking the first occurrence of a Dimetrodon fossil in Canada.

Related Dinosaur Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Setbacks
Failure can feel lonely and final. But can we learn from failure, even reframe it, to feel more like a temporary setback? This hour, TED speakers on changing a crushing defeat into a stepping stone. Guests include entrepreneur Leticia Gasca, psychology professor Alison Ledgerwood, astronomer Phil Plait, former professional athlete Charly Haversat, and UPS training manager Jon Bowers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#524 The Human Network
What does a network of humans look like and how does it work? How does information spread? How do decisions and opinions spread? What gets distorted as it moves through the network and why? This week we dig into the ins and outs of human networks with Matthew Jackson, Professor of Economics at Stanford University and author of the book "The Human Network: How Your Social Position Determines Your Power, Beliefs, and Behaviours".