Ancient Carnivorous Dinosaurs Footprints Found In Germany

Posted: Aug 17 2015, 5:57am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 17 2015, 6:04am CDT, in News | Latest Science News

Ancient Carnivorous Dinosaurs Footprints Found in Germany
False color photo of megalosauripus footprints. Color scale shows how deep the footprint goes down. The footprint is left by the small dinosaur. Credit: Pernille Venø Troelsen.

The footprints belonged to 142 million year old dinosaurs. They were carnivorous that were in Germany.

One of them is rather big. The other one is smaller. And they happened to be carnivorous dinosaurs. They strolled on the sandy beach of Germany some 142 million years ago. The two left their footprints in the mushy sand.

The fossilized remains of those footprints have reached us modern mammals. Once in a while the imprints of the feet are seen to slide due to the wet sand. But they pretty much stay on their course.

The smaller dinosaur had to work harder than usual to keep up with the larger one. The pace was slow for a carnivore saurian. Most meat-eaters could run at 40 km/h. But these two stayed at a pace of 6.3 km/h to 9.7 km/h. The details about this new find got relayed to the rest of the world by the biologist Pernille Vene.

"As a biologist, I can contribute with knowledge about behavior of the individual animals", explains Pernille Venø Troelsen.

Six years ago the excavation yielded these footprints. And the digging continued for three years. Germany was the site of the archaeological unearthing. Footprints of ancient creatures are found there and have been since the past 200 years.

Biologists look at footprints of past creatures in a changed manner than geologists. The geological surveys had been extant since a long time ago. But Pernille was a biologist and she saw the footprints from an alternative angle.

The data gathered thanks to this new approach is different. That is from the otherwise stale information. Especially the behavior of the beasts got inferred from the fossils of their footprints. The carnivores belonged to the group known as Megalosauripus. Their heights were 1.6 meters and 1.1 meters.

The smaller one often intertwined its legs at occasional moments in its walk on the beach. This could have been due to several reasons. Either it lost its balance due to the treacherous ground upon which it walked.

Or it found something to eat on the ground and snooped around for the grub. And it could have tried to stick close to the bigger beast and so fell out of line. The suggestions point towards a parent and child dinosaur pair. They were social animals.

That’s for sure. The carnivorous dinosaurs were the same size as raptors. We remember raptors from the Jurassic Park franchise. Dinosaur footprints are found in several other places in Europe too.

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