Therizinosaur embryo

Sunday, August 21, 2011

All things considered, dinosaur embryos are not actually that rare. The issue with many however, is working out what taxon they might belong to. After all, a very young ceratopsian is not going to have much of a crest or horns which is generally how we identify them.

In fact the skull is often the weakest and most disintegrated part of even a great embryo and as such quite a few are left as simply ‘indet’ on their designations. This is, sadly, another one, but the identification is quite specific – it belongs to a therizinosaur. These are not especially common taxa and aside from this. I’m not aware of any other eggs assigned to the group which makes one with an embryo in rather special.

Of course there’s not too much to see here, the bones are tiny and (shooting through glass a distance away) it’s not the greatest of photos. Still, it is nice to see just what detail can preserve on occasion, and if you look carefully, you should be able to see an associated premaxilla and maxilla that make up the snout and outline the naris and antorbital fenestra. Cool!

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