Skip to content

Fearsome beast once stalked Europe: New dinosaur identified

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
3/6/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

'Torvosaurus gurneyi' terrorized continent in the late Jurassic Period

It wasn't as big as the Tyrannosaurus Rex - but you definitely didn't want to cross paths with it on the European continent in the late Jurassic Period. Two scientists in Portugal have announced they have identified the largest carnivorous dinosaur to roam Europe. Over 30-feet long, the monster called Torvosaurus gurneyi claimed the prehistoric world for its own.

An imposing thunder lizard, the torvosaurus gurneyi was bipedal, weighed 2.5 to 3.6 tons.

An imposing thunder lizard, the torvosaurus gurneyi was bipedal, weighed 2.5 to 3.6 tons.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
3/6/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Torvosaurus gurneyi, dinosaurs, discovery, Portugal


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "It was indeed better not to cross the way of this large, carnivorous dinosaur," paleontologist Christophe Hendrickx of Universidade Nova de Lisboa and Museu da Lourinha in Portugal says.

An imposing thunder lizard, the torvosaurus gurneyi was bipedal, weighed 2.5 to 3.6 tons. It had a skull almost four-feet long, boasted powerful jaws lined with blade-shaped teeth 10 centimeters long, and may have been covered with an early form of feathers, Hendrickx says.

Saint Patrick's Day is coming -- go here --

An artist

An artist's impression of the newly identified Torvosaurus gurneyi.


"Torvosaurus gurneyi was obviously a super predator feeding on large prey like herbivorous dinosaurs," he said.

Unearthed in Portugal by an amateur fossil hunter in 2003 in the rock cliffs of Lourinha, fossilized embryos probably belonging to this species were identified last year in Portugal.

Torvosaurus prowled the landscape during the Jurassic era; the region was a lush river delta with abundant fresh water and vegetation. The area teemed with dinosaurs and flying reptiles known as pterosaurs, primitive birds, crocodiles, turtles and mouse-sized mammals.

The enormous creature, named Torvosaurus gurney, was discovered in Lisbon, Portugal. It was more tha

The enormous creature, named Torvosaurus gurney, was discovered in Lisbon, Portugal. It was more than 30-feet long and had razor-sharp four-inch-long teeth.


Paleontologist Octavio Mateus, also of Universidade Nova de Lisboa and Museu da Lourinha says that plant-eating dinosaurs living in the area included the huge, long-necked Lusotitan, the armored, tank-like Dracopelta and the spiky-tailed Miragaia.

Both scientists said this is the second species of the genus Torvosaurus. The other one, Torvosaurus tanneri, identified in 1979, and lived at the same time in North America and roamed the states of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.

One of the original upper mouth palates of the Torvosaurus gurneyi is pictured. T. gurneyi had blade

One of the original upper mouth palates of the Torvosaurus gurneyi is pictured. T. gurneyi had blade-shaped teeth up to 10 cm long, which indicates it may have been at the top of the food chain.


Its genus name, Torvosaurus, means "savage lizard." Its species name, gurneyi, honors James Gurney, the author and illustrator of the popular Dinotopia book series.

It must be noted that the Torvosaurus gurneyi was not the only meat-eating monster during this period. There was the European species of the well-known North American Jurassic predator Allosaurus.

An artist

An artist's impression of a Torvosaurus gurneyi compared with a human being. The beast, found in Portugal, is estimated to have been up to 10 meters long and weighing in at between four and five tons.


The discovery is literally, a "big deal." Torvosaurus gurneyi is not only is the largest known meat-eating dinosaur from Europe, but is the biggest land predator of any kind ever found on the continent, they added.

The bones were originally thought to belong to Torvosaurus tanneri, a dinosaur species from North Am

The bones were originally thought to belong to Torvosaurus tanneri, a dinosaur species from North America. But a closer look the shin bone, upper jawbone, teeth, and partial tail vertebrae suggested that the creature may warrant a new species name, Torvosaurus gurneyi.


There were larger dinosaur carnivores elsewhere, however. Such as the Tyrannosaurus Rex in North America, Carcharodontosaurus and Spinosaurus in North Africa and Giganotosaurus in Argentina. While these three dinosaurs were all larger, they all appeared on Earth much later than Torvosaurus, during the Cretaceous Period that followed the Jurassic Period.

"This animal, Torvosaurus, was already a fossil for 80 million years before the T-Rex ever walked the Earth," Mateus said.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for APRIL 2017
Young People.
That young people may respond generously to their vocations and seriously consider offering themselves to God in the priesthood or consecrated life.


Comments


More Green

Decades-old conundrum solved by chance - Can one of nature's squiggly insects change the fate of the world? Watch

Image of Are wax worms the answer to our plastic waste problem?

What if one of the world's more significant issues can be corrected with help from one of the smallest, seemingly insignificant of ... continue reading


Oroville Dam Breach? DWR Investigating Leaking - Hasn't Revealed this to the Public Watch

Image of The green area on the face of the dam suggests water is seeping though the dam.

A Leak in the core of an Earthen Dam is known to trigger catastrophic failure within hours.  Oroville's Earthen Dam has a persistent ... continue reading


Scientists discover a scary Antarctic mystery - how worried should we be? Watch

Image of Antarctica is melting, but without more data, it's too soon to worry.

Antarctica may be melting faster than thought, according to a new study. Antarctica is a region of concern because its ice, if melted, ... continue reading


The Arctic is drowning in plastic, and it could kill us all Watch

Image of A sea lion is tangled in a net, the result of decades of human disregard for the environment.

Our planet is drowning in plastic, and this is becoming obvious, even in the pristine Arctic. Researcher now estimate that up to 1,200 tons ... continue reading


5 Things God wants us to remember about the Earth Watch

Image of What does God say about preserving the Earth?

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. What happened next changed everything. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.