You should all know that velociraptors weren’t really like they were portrayed in ‘Jurassic Park’. They were an awful lot smaller, they had feathers, and they probably weren’t quite so smart. But they *were* nasty predators. Or were they?
We now have enough fossils of feathered dinosaurs to fill entire museums. These specimens have beautifully recorded the history of feather evolution but Ryan McKellar from the University of Alberta has found another narrator for that tale: amber.
A painstaking search through thousands of chunks of amber has unearthed 11 prehistoric feathers. They promise an unprecedented look at the history of these peculiar structures in both birds and non-avian dinosaurs.
Fluffy structures trapped in thumbnail-sized bits of ancient amber may represent some of the earliest evolutionary experiments leading to feathers, according to a new study. These filaments of "dinofuzz" are so well preserved that they even provide hints of color, the researchers say.
Many unknown dinosaurs await discovery in rock formations all over the world, but some new species are hiding in plain sight. One such animal, described in an in-press Cretaceous Research paper, had one of the largest heads of any dinosaur.
The last few weeks have been pretty exciting for people interested in theropod dinosaurs.... but then, you could say this about most weeks: new theropods are constantly being published.