Are we facing another mass extinction? Teeth indicate that the fossils found in Montana belonged to a Tyrannosaurus rex. However, researchers said it could also be the remnants of controversial dinosaur species, the nanotyrannus. David Burnham )
Paleontologists may have found a fossil of a baby tyrannosaurus rex from the Hell Creek Formation in central Montana
The remains include the Upper jaw with intact teeth. Parts of the dinosaur's skull, hips, and spine were also found.
The teeth indicate that the fossils were remnants of a Tyrannosaurus Rex, which was about 66.5 million years old. It also looked like the fossil belonged to a teenager, but researchers said that there is more to do to confirm this. The fossil could belong to another type of small and carnivorous dinosaur.
Remains may be from a baby T-Rex or other type of dinosaur
David Burnham from the University of Kansas Biodiversity Institute said it is rare. Remains of a young T. rex are found, and so far only a few have been found
This makes it difficult for researchers to spot changes in the prehistoric animal caused by growth. It makes it possible that observed differences in the bones of the specimen and those of the adult Tyrannosaurus rex could mean that the fossil belongs to another species.
"It is reasonable to assume that Nanotyrannus could be valid ̵
The researcher said that the confusing problem with the find is the age of the dinosaur, on the grounds that the bones of adult dinosaurs, especially the skull, did not look like they were younger. He said it was possible that the specimen belonged to Nanotyrannus, a carnivorous dinosaur found in the Hell Creek Formation.
The Nanotyrannus is also a controversial dinosaur species because it is not clear whether it represents a separate species or if it is just a young Tyrannosaurus rex.
In 1988, the paleontologist Robert Bakker and his colleagues proclaimed the fossil of the so-called Cleveland skull, which was excavated in 1942 and housed in the Cleveland Museum of Natural History collections. For decades it belonged to a new genus of small-bellied tyrannosaurs. They called this Nanotyrannus.
Other scientists, including Carthage College paleontologist Thomas Carr, think otherwise. At the 2015 Vertebrate Paleontology Society meeting, Carr and his colleagues suggested Nanotyrannus was just the younger version of Tyrannosaurus rex.
"The extreme changes from the slender skull of the juvenile to the robust adult skull were too much to believe for some people," said Carr. "For example, they did not want to hear that T. rex lost tooth positions as it grew from a boy with many teeth to an adult with fewer teeth."
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