So, it’s a Trex fossil!

Last Updated: Friday, November 6, 2009 - 15:06

London: More than 100 years after pulling out a skull from a reservoir in Britain, scientists have identified the fossils were of a dinosaur, most ancient relative of Tyrannosaurus rex (T.rex).

The near-complete 30 cm skull of Proceratosaurus, the 165-million-year-old ancestor of T.rex, was uncovered during excavations for a reservoir close to Minchinhampton in Gloucestershire in 1900s.

The fossil was presented to the Natural History Museum, where it is preserved, in 1922.

A team of British and German scientists, including two fossil experts from London`s Natural History Museum, used computed tomography (CT) techniques to generate X-rays and a 3D image of the delicate skull remains.

They found that its teeth, jaws and braincase all closely resemble the structures found in the gigantic predator. "It was quite a surprise when our analysis showed we had the oldest known relative of T.rex," said Angela Milner, Museum dinosaur expert.

Initial study of the fossils reveals that Proceratosaurus was much smaller than T.rex, probably about 3m long, and lived 100 million years earlier.

Detailed study of the skull is expected to reveal important clues about the early stages of the evolution of these fearsome predators.

"Fossils collected a century ago can now be studied again
with the benefit of much greater knowledge of dinosaurs from
around the world," Milner said.

Bureau Report



First Published: Friday, November 6, 2009 - 15:06

comments powered by Disqus