This Duck-Like Dinosaur Could Swim. That Isn’t the Strangest Thing About it.


If it looked like a duck, achieved it swim like a duck?

Paleontologists studying a unique fossil have got identified a new dinosaur, related to the velociraptor, that had a neck like a swan, a snout like a goose and forelimbs like flippers. The creature’s hodgepodge of features – so unusual that extra function was had a need to verify the fossil’s authenticity – advise that it could have resided on both property and in normal water, they reported in a paper published Wednesday in Nature.

If so, that would make the species, known as Halszkaraptor escuilliei, simply the next swimming dinosaur ever found, following the ferocious spinosaurus (though even that’s debated).

The clues that advise H. escuilliei was semiaquatic incorporate its long throat and hooked, crocodile-like pearly whites, which it may have utilized to plunge deal with first at seafood from the water surface area. The dinosaur also had a snout filled up with sensory nerves that are typically seen in crocodiles and utilized to identify movement and temperature adjustments in normal water. Its forelimbs were shaped significantly less like wings and more like flippers, similar to those utilized by marine reptiles just like the plesiosaur to swim.

“It was made for swimming,” said Pascal Godefroit, a paleontologist at the Royal Belgian Institute of Organic Sciences in Brussels and an author on the paper, “but which kind of swimming we don’t be aware of.”


Most likely it used its flipper-like forelimbs to go like a penguin. Or its long legs to wade through normal water like a crane or heron. Dr. Godefroit explained the dinosaur lacked webbed foot, so it can be unlikely that it swam like a swan, gracefully gliding on the water’s surface area while feverishly paddling below. Instead, its legs and clawed foot were better fitted to running on land. If the dinosaur utilized its foot to propel itself in the normal water, it would not need been as successful a swimmer as a swan or duck, Dr. Godefroit said. It also was probably not a diver like some normal water fowl.

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Though the prehistoric oceans were teeming with fierce marine predators just like the ichthyosaurs and mesosaurs, those leviathans were not dinosaurs, but rather marine reptiles like sea turtles. The newly learned H. escuilliei was a turkey-sized raptor. This finding will help present that the raptor group included not merely terrestrial killing equipment like deinonychus and possibly flying members like microraptor, but also swimmers.

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