Duck-Like Dinosaur Split Time Between Water, Land, Study Says

Mindy Sparks
December 7, 2017

According to paleontologists, this exceptionally well-preserved dinosaur skeleton had a graceful, swan-like neck.

An worldwide team of researchers used 3D synchrotron analysis to study the fossil, which revealed that the dinosaur lived in present-day Mongolia during the Cretaceous Period.

He added that Halszkaraptor had sickle-shaped "killer claws" on its feet similar to those of Velociraptor.

The new dinosaur, named Halszkaraptor escuilliei, was announced today in the journal Nature. Scientists have named it Halszkaraptor escuilliei in honor Askole and Polish archaeologist Galski Osmolskae (Halszka Osmolska), who discovered many dinosaurs in Mongolia at the end of the last century.

Kay and her colleagues found one of the most awesome feathered dinosaurs, examining fossil "VelociRaptor", found in the distant past "black paleontologists" in the vicinity of the town of Uchoa-Tolgod, located in the South of Mongolia, at the border of the Gobi desert.

The research sheds light on an unexpected amphibious lifestyle for raptorial dinosaurs.This is exactly a new species of bird-like dinosaur.

Like a penguin it had flippers, like an ostrich it walked and also it could swim. In particular, researchers found that nearly all dinosaurs had feathers, and that many of them had sat on the eggs revealed the secrets of the color of the first birds and flight, and had several times to reshape their tree of evolution.

A unusual turkey-sized, bird-like dinosaur that boasted a swan's neck, arms resembling flippers, long legs and a mouth full of needle-like teeth staked out a unique amphibious lifestyle in rivers and lakes about 75 million years ago in Mongolia. "I doubt that we know one percent of one percent that lived in the world", the study's co-author Philip Currie, a paleontologist at the University of Alberta, told National Geographic. Paleontologist Kristi Curry Rogers of Macalester College in Minnesota described the creature. One of them, a paleontologist at the ESRF, Paul Tafforeau, explains that the creatures' unique body type allowed it to hunt on land and fish in freshwater.

Pascal Godefroit of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in Brussels said: "Illicit fossil trade presents a great challenge to modern paleontology and accounts for a dramatic loss of Mongolian scientific heritage".

Scientists are still analyzing the data - all 6 terabytes worth - collected from their study, which included multi-resolution X-ray microtomography of the fossil.

Lead author Andrea Cau, a paleontologist at the Geological Museum Capellini in Bologna, Italy, said he was at first highly suspicious about the fossil's authenticity, both because of its appearance and the fact that the rock containing the skeleton had been smuggled out of Mongolia and left in a private collector's hands. "This technique is now the most powerful and sensitive method to image internal details without damaging invaluable fossils".

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