Fossils of Meat-Eating Dino Found

Fossils of a small carnivorous dinosaur unearthed in New Mexico back up the idea that all dinosaurs originated in what is now South America, evolved quickly and then dispersed from their homeland.

The newly described species, a theropod dinosaur dubbed Tawa hallae, lived about 213 million years ago, says Sterling J. Nesbitt, a paleontologist at the University of Texas at Austin. A complete and exceptionally preserved skeleton of a juvenile indicates that the creature had a body roughly the size of a Labrador retriever, would have stood about 70 centimeters tall at the hip, and measured about 2 meters long, the researchers report in the Dec. 11 Science. Adults may have been about 4 meters long.

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