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University of Alberta doctoral student helped uncover very first young Tyrannosaurus fossil
U of A says fossil discovery will help shed new light on dinosaur growth.
“The discovery of embryonic material is a major breakthrough in our efforts to understand how some of the most famous and attractive dinosaurs started in their lives and grew to enormous sizes.”, said Mike Bowers, second author of the study and doctoral student.
Led by Greg Vanston U of A, the study focused on two large pits: a small toe paw from an Albertosaurus coffin found near Morrin, in Alberta And a small lower jaw of Daspletosaurus homeri in Montana
According to the press release, the claw size is 715 million years old and the age of the jaw is about 75 million years
“Tyrannosaurs are represented by tens of skeletons and thousands of individual bones or partial skeletons”, said Bowers.
“ But despite this massive amount of data on the biology of tyrannosaurs, the youngest individuals that can be identified are between three and four years old, which is much bigger than they used to be ”, he added, adding that no tyrannosaur eggs or embryos were found even after 150 years of research. – Until now
“There were two surprising discoveries. The first was that the teeth of young tyrannosaurs were distinct from the teeth of older individuals. – not having developed real serrations along the edge of his teeth, as is the case for juveniles to adults, “This Bowers.
The second is the estimated size of the embryos. The length of the sample belonging to the toe claw was estimated to be approximately 110 cm, while the length of the jaw specimen was approximately 71 cm.
The size estimates are said to be in good agreement with the hypothetical hatch proposed by the late American Canadian paleontologist Dale Russell in 1970, selon Powers
Bowers noted: «It was an unexpected but surreal result, because the study was published in a special issue of the Canadian Journal of Geosciences to honor Dale Russell for his contributions to the field of paleontology.
Tyrannosaurus, University of Alberta, Fossil, student, dinosaur
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