Paleontologists have discovered a stimulating new species of meat-eating dinosaur in Utah that inhabited the flood plains of western North America during the Late Jurassic , between 157-152 million years ago.
The species belongs to the allosauroids, a gaggle of small to large-bodied, two-legged carnivorous dinosaurs that lived during the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, and has been unveiled at the explanation Museum of Utah.
Previously, paleontologists thought there was just one species of Allosaurus in Jurassic North America.
“This study shows there have been two species — the newly described Allosaurus jimmadseni evolved a minimum of five million years before its younger cousin, Allosaurus fragilis,” said co-lead author Mark Loewen, research associate at the explanation Museum of Utah.
Allosaurus jimmadseni is distinguished by variety of unique features, including low crests running from above the eyes to the snout and a comparatively narrow back of the skull with a flat surface to rock bottom of the upper skull under the eyes.
At 155 million years old, Allosaurus jimmadseni is that the geologically-oldest species of Allosaurus, predating the more well-known State Fossil of Utah Allosaurus fragilis.
Allosaurus jimmadseni was the foremost common and therefore the top predator in its ecosystem. It had relatively long legs and tail, and long arms with three sharp claws.
“The skull of Allosaurus jimmadseni is more lightly built than its later relative Allosaurus fragilis, suggesting a special feeding behavior between the two,” he added during a paper published within the open-access scientific journal PeerJ.
George Engelmann of the University of Nebraska, Omaha initially discovered the initial skeleton of the new species within the Dinosaur memorial in 1990.
In 1996, many years after the headless skeleton was collected, the radioactive skull belonging to the skeleton was made employing a radiation detector by Ramal Jones of the Utah University.
Allosaurus jimmadseni lived on the semi-arid Morrison Formation floodplains of the within of western North America.