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Giant Fossilised Footprint Of Dinosaur Found in China

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Giant Fossilised Footprint Of Dinosaur Found in China

(CTN News) – A team of palaeontologists believes they have discovered fossilized footprints of one of China’s largest raptors. The collection of five fossilized dinosaur footprints is half the length of a school bus.

The footprints were discovered in a dinosaur trackway in south-east China in 2020. Scientists believe dinosaurs walked over the muddy river during the Cretaceous period, leaving footprints. Some footprints have been preserved for tens of millions of years.

The dinosaur trackway was unearthed in Longxiang and is around the size of a hockey rink. Some of the footprints are unusually formed, with intact imprints of only two toes.

Fossilised footprint of megaraptor found in China

Giant fossil footprints lead to megaraptor dinosaur discovery in China

Raptors, or predatory birds, are often small and referred to as deinonychosaurs. For example, a Velociraptor is around the size of a turkey. Few raptors, such as the Utahraptor and Dakotaraptor, increased in size significantly, reaching lengths of 5 to 6 metres. The Triassic ichthyosaur was the largest raptor known until now.

“Exploring Longxiang: The Rich Dinosaur Trackway in Southeastern China”

According to the scientists, the predator would have attacked its prey with a pair of huge “killing claws” on each foot.

What scientists discovered recently in China is massive, far larger than the largest superpredator known to date.

Scott Persons of the College of Charleston in South Carolina, and his colleagues, added another large raptor to the list. They named it Fujianipus, and they believe it lived in East Asia some 96 million years ago.

Scott Persons at the College of Charleston in South Carolina and his colleagues added another giant raptor to the list. They named it Fujianipus, and they say it lived in East Asia about 96 million years ago. Photograph:(Twitter)

Persons and his colleagues are currently working on areas of Fujianipus’ skeleton, therefore little is known. The investigators only discovered a few of its 36-centimetre-long imprints.

“Preservation conditions were right for footprints but not so great for bones,” Persons said. However, scientists are certain that the footprints belong to a raptor because each one contains the imprint of only two toes, which corresponds to the foot anatomy of raptors. Raptors generally have three toes, but they keep one off the ground to preserve the big claw at the tip from wear and tear.

People believe Fujianipus demonstrates that raptors had the ability to grow much larger and compete with the largest predatory dinosaurs on the landscape at the time – allosauroids, some of which exceeded 10 metres or more in length.

According to Persons, raptors had an advantage over allosauroids in terms of speed. However, without fossilized leg bones, the researchers cannot correctly measure Fujianipus’ speed.

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Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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