Did an American dinosaur swim over the sea to Skye 170 million years ago?

A THREE-TOED dinosaur which once roamed the Isle of Skye may have been the same species as one whose prints have been found in the Red Gulch mountains in Wyoming, paleontologists said yesterday.

The 170 million-year-old tracks are so similar that Glasgow paleontologist Neil Clark believes the Wyoming dinosaurs may have swum or waded over to Skye – which at that time was part of an island off the east coast of America.

US scientists now pl an to put his theories to the test, using 3D mapping technology to compare both sets of footprints.

Dr Clark, Curator of Paleontology at the Hunterian Museum in Glasgow, said: "The fact that the footprints in Wyoming and the ones in Scotland are so similar suggest that they may have been produced by a very similar kind of dinosaur, if not the same species. It is just a case of comparing them to see if they match."

Many of the dinosaur prints on Skye were discovered in the 1980s when cliffs crumbled into the sea. The prints in Wyoming were found in 1997, along the shoreline of what would have been the Sundance Sea.

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