One of Europe's largest predatory dinosaurs was discovered in the U.K.

Scientists announced Thursday that the United Kingdom has discovered the remains of one of Europe’s largest land-based predator dinosaurs.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
10 June 2022 Friday 06:09
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One of Europe's largest predatory dinosaurs was discovered in the U.K.

Scientists announced Thursday that the United Kingdom has discovered the remains of one of Europe’s largest land-based predator dinosaurs.

After discovering prehistoric bones on the Isle of Wight (a small island off England), paleontologists from Britain's University of Southampton stated that the two-legged, crocodile faced spinosaurid was alive 125 million years ago.

Chris Barker, a doctoral candidate, stated in a news release that "this was a large animal." He added that the animal was nearly 33 feet in length and weighed several tons.

He said that it appeared to be one of the largest European predatory dinosaurs, possibly the largest known.

Because bones from the back, hips and tail of the creature were found in white rock, the team called their find "white rock spinosaurid".

"Because it is only known from fragments right now, we haven’t given it a formal scientific title," said Darren Naish (a paleontologist who coauthored the study). He said, "We hope that additional remains turn up in the future."

Neil Gostling, the project supervisor, stated by email that "coastal environments don't preserve items well so any find helps us understand the dinosaurs around this time."

According to the study, the spinosaurid would have hunted for food in lagoons and on sand flats. Fish would have been a major part of its diet.

The bones have been marked with tunnels that were drilled into the pelvis. This suggests that the skeleton was used as food by decomposers and scavengers after death.

"It's an interesting idea that this giant killer ended up becoming a dinner for a host of bugs," stated Jeremy Lockwood, a University of Portsmouth doctoral student who participated in the study.

Barker suggested that the spinosaurid family could have evolved in Europe approximately 150 million years ago. He also said that the creature discovered by Barker was "probably" the youngest British spinosaur yet discovered. This expands the temporal range for the family.

According to the team, the next step is to examine the bone of the dinosaur under a microscope to gain a better understanding of its growth rate as well as its age.

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