The Lark Quarry located near the town of Winton in Queensland (Australia) is the website of one of the most crucial assortment of dinosaur tracks discovered to date. When these tracks were first studied by Dr. Tony Thulborn and his colleague Mary Wade and their work published in 1984, the footprints caused a sensation as the many trackways were interpreted as herd of smaller Ornithopod dinosaurs in the organization of some Coelurosaurs stampeding after they certainly were cornered by way of a lumbering giant Theropod dinosaur.
Important Trace Fossil Site in Australia
Ichnologists (scientists who study trace fossils, especially footprints), assigned the name Wintonopus to the tiny, Ornithopods, Skartopus to the bigger Coelurosaurs and the eleven prints believed to spell it out the large, predatory Theropod attempting the ambush were assigned to Tyrannosauropus. However, a fresh paper published in the academic publication “The Journal of Vertebrate Palaeontology” interprets the tracks in an exceedingly different way. Lead author, Queensland palaeontologist Anthony Romilio presents evidence to suggest these footprints are not proof of a dinosaur ambush with a resulting stampede but the tracks made by dinosaurs while they forded a river. Rather than “Walking with Dinosaurs”, this new research suggests a situation of “Swimming as well as Wading with Dinosaurs”!
Cretaceous Dinosaur Trackways
The footprints are believed currently from around 95 million years ago approximately (Albian to Cenomanian faunal stages), the strata that the footprints were discovered in does represent fluvial deposits (river sediments), however, this new interpretation proposes that the tracks were made by dinosaurs whilst in the water and not on the river bank. Walking along a river bed, especially one where in actuality the water could have been a maximum of forty centimetres deep could have made sense if the banks were heavily vegetated, progress through dense scrub and forests could have been much slower if the dinosaurs had chosen a land route.
The Queensland palaeontologist stated that lots of the footprints and impressions made by the dinosaurs were nothing more than scratches or elongated grooves preserved in the rock. These might be interpretated as marks made by the dinosaurs while they punted or waded along the river bed. what dinosaur has 500 teeth A few of the more unusual tracks could represent “tippy-toe” traces, where an animal made deep, nearly vertical impressions in to the soft river bed using its clawed toes while they propelled themselves through the human body of water.
In the paper, the scientist argues that it’s difficult to see how the tracks has been made by an animal walking or running on land, even one panicked by an ambush from a predator. If the tracks had been made on land the impressions made could have been much flatter.
Not the First Example of a Swimming Dinosaur Found to Date
Fossilised footprints of a swimming dinosaur have already been present in the past. There’s an essential single dinosaur trackway discovered in Spain that seems to exhibit a tri-dactyl, Theropod dinosaur touching the underside of a lake occasionally since it swam across it. The sediments preserve the claw marks and impressions made by the dinosaur at it touched the lake bed and pushed itself off again to continue its journey.
Very Important Scientific Site in Queensland
The Lark Quarry site represents one of the most crucial sets of dinosaur footprints known to science. More than 3,000 individual prints have already been identified so far. Several the tracks, such as the “dinosaur stampede/river crossing site” are on public display.
Modern Technology Used to Assess Ancient Trackways
Using three-dimensional footprint mapping techniques, the University of Queensland scientist has provided numerous new insights in to the dinosaur tracks of Lark Quarry. In 2010, Anthony Romilio published a scientific paper that suggested that the footprints assigned to the meat-eater Tyrannosauropus were actually made by a sizable, herbivorous Ornithopod, a dinosaur similar to Muttaburrasaurus for example.
Commenting on the newly published research and reflecting on the sooner work suggesting that the large dinosaur tracks weren’t made by a predator, Anthony stated that taken completely, the investigation suggested that the Lark Quarry sediments did not portray a dinosaur stampede.
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