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Science Rewrites Assumptions About Pre-Historic Animals

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posted on Jan, 24 2012 @ 09:34 PM
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Paleontologist Phil Currie was walking along the sandstone cliffs of the badlands in southern Alberta when he spotted something sticking out of the side of the hill.

It appeared to be the fossil of an ancient turtle. But as he began to clear away the sand, he could see that it was the skull of a dinosaur.

There is nothing extraordinary about finding fossils in Dinosaur Provincial Park. In fact, there is no better place to find the remains of these so-called "terrible lizards" that walked the earth for more than 165 million years.

But in the days that followed in that summer of 2010, Currie suspected he may have found something extraordinary indeed. This specimen appeared to be so rare and so exquisitely preserved that he instructed his students and colleagues to go slow with the excavation when he had to leave base camp for a few days.

"I just didn't want to miss out on this one," he recalls. "It's extremely rare to find a dinosaur such as this, and almost as rare to find one that is so complete. I wanted to be there to see what we had by the time we were done with it."


Great read so I had to share.
And...It's from my hometown...well the paper is.



Now, thanks to a mathematical simulation done by Currie and Nathan P. Myhrvold of Microsoft Research, we know, for instance, that the enormous tail of Apatosaurus was not so much a way of counterbalancing this dinosaur's long neck, as it was a giant whip that could theoretically break the speed of sound and create a sonic boom that would scare the heck out of a large predator, or at least make it take pause.


How awesome is that?


As I said this was great article done by the ever evolving field of paleontology, with bigger discoveries coming forward in the near future, this article is almost like a movie trailer.


I cannot wait to see what they have found and how much it will affect our knowledge of dinosaurs, because the though of slow-dim witted creatures ruling the planet has to be a bit of an understatement.


Any thoughts?

Pred...
edit on 24-1-2012 by predator0187 because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 24 2012 @ 10:02 PM
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I remember reading about this wayyyyy back in the day in an article written when Spielberg/Crichton's 'The Lost World' came out. The article discussed the whip-like tail, feathered raptors, and swimmming t-rexes.

What I wouldn't give to have a window back into that time?



posted on Jan, 24 2012 @ 10:13 PM
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Whips do go through a lot of stress with the ends constantly fraying. While the thought of a dinosaur cracking his tail sounds cool I am not sure how the biology could constantly withstand such forces. I am sure there would be a good hit in the tail, but need more than some bone modelling for a sonic boom.



posted on Jan, 25 2012 @ 07:29 AM
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Originally posted by kwakakev
Whips do go through a lot of stress with the ends constantly fraying. While the thought of a dinosaur cracking his tail sounds cool I am not sure how the biology could constantly withstand such forces. I am sure there would be a good hit in the tail, but need more than some bone modelling for a sonic boom.


As an Australian,if you have ever been close to a goanna you'd know this a common practice.I have kept dozen's of them and they all do this in defense.Hurts like hell too.



posted on Jan, 25 2012 @ 08:26 AM
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reply to post by 13th Zodiac
 




As an Australian,if you have ever been close to a goanna you'd know this a common practice.I have kept dozen's of them and they all do this in defense.Hurts like hell too.


As an Australian, I know a goanna can treat a person like a tree when threatened and claw up them. I have not heard of a sonic crack from a goanna, but the goanna tail is some really nice meant, very stringy chicken. If you have any examples of a crack I would to check it out.



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