T. Rex News

The BBC reports this week on the discovery of a new tyrannosaur by a team from University of Edinburgh. Found in Uzbekistan, this small species was tagged Timurlengia.

 The scientific reports are in publication, but the news article indicates that this individual is much smaller than the later T. rex, yet has a similar size brain and head. This suggests that the tyrannosaur family were horse-sized but smart, fast, dangerous hunters, which later grew to be giants.

This work comes from the lab of Stephen Brusatte, who seems to be an eminent tyranosaurian (and probably tyranosaurophile). One of his earlier works is “The phylogeny and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroid dinosaurs”, which is a comprehensive description of the tyrannosaur family tree [2].

Strict consensus topology of five most parsimonious trees recovered from the cladistic analysis. Numbers by nodes indicate Bremer and jackknife support values. Thick lines next to each taxon depict temporal range, which in most cases is age uncertainty and not true range, and colors of lines denote geographic areas. Branches of the phylogeny are not scaled to time. Silhouettes are in relative proportion and scaled to total body length (T. rex = 13 meters). Geographic silhouettes from Loewen et al. and taxon silhouettes from phylopic.org (Kileskus: T.M. Keesey; Guanlong: S. Hartman; Yutyrannus: S. Hartman; Dilong: FunkMonk; Juratyrant: S. Hartman, T.M. Keesey; Eotyrannus: S. Hartman; Dryptosaurus T.M. Keesey; Albertosaurus C. Dylke; Nanuqsaurus J. Headden; Daspletosaurus S. O’Connor, T.M. Keesey; Tyrannosaurus S. Hartman). From: [2]
How cool would it be to be not only a dinosaur scientist, but one of the top Tyrannosaur guys!  Does he pay them to let him work there?


 

  1. Stephen L. Brusatte, Alexander Averianov, Hans-Dieter Sues, Amy Muir, and Ian B. Butler, New tyrannosaur from the mid-Cretaceous of Uzbekistan clarifies evolution of giant body sizes and advanced senses in tyrant dinosaurs. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, March 14, 2016 2016. http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2016/03/08/1600140113.abstract
  2. Stephen L. Brusatte and Thomas D. Carr, The phylogeny and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroid dinosaurs. Scientific Reports, 6:20252, 02/02/online 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep20252

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