Foot long, 7-ounce heavy ‘world''s smallest dinosaur’ unearthed
Sunday 05 July, 2015

Foot long, 7-ounce heavy ‘world”s smallest dinosaur’ unearthed

Published On: Sat, Jun 11th, 2011 | Evolution | By BioNews

British paleontologists have unearthed the world”s smallest non-avian dinosaur, measuring about a foot in length and weighing just seven ounces.

The tiny dinosaur has been nicknamed Ashdown maniraptoran and is believed to have lived during the Lower Cretaceous, a period lasting from 145 to 100 million years ago.

“It perhaps weighed as little as 200 grams (seven ounces),” Discovery News quoted co-author Darren Naish as saying.

“Like other maniraptoran theropods, this would have been a small, feathered, bird-like bipedal dinosaur with a fairly short tail, long neck, long slim hind legs, and feathered clawed forelimbs,” he added.

Naish and his colleague unearthed the remains of the dinosaur in the Pivensey Pit at Ashdown Brickworks, a site located northwest of Bexhill, East Sussex.

The researchers explained that since they had not unearthed the dinosaur’s skull yet, they could not make a firm statement about its diet.

“Based on other oviraptorosaurs and other small maniraptorans, it was perhaps an omnivore, eating small animals, including insects, as well as leaves and fruit,” said Naish.

The research appears in the latest issue of Cretaceous Research.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

More from Evolution
  • Ancient stone tools shaped human communication too
  • Dinosaurs flourished in Europe until 66 m years ago
  • Dogs migrated to the Americas after humans
  • Fossilised tooth challenges Late Triassic assumptions
  • ‘Extinct human gene helped Tibetans survive high altitudes’