The Cannibal Coelophysis: New Look Suggests This Dinosaur Is No Beast

From the Washington Post (2-page article): 

Alas, poor Coelophysis! We thought we knew him well.

Birdlike dinosaur.

Prehistoric inhabitant of New Mexico.

And above all, a cannibal. So heartless, so cold, it ate its own young.

Or so the story went.

Now a new analysis of the fossil evidence indicates that scientists did not know Coelophysis (pronounced SEE-lo-FYE-sis) so well after all. Bones preserved inside the fossilized stomach of an adult Coelophysis, long believed to be the remnants of a snack-sized baby Coelophysis and the primary evidence for cannibalism by that species, are actually bones from a crocodile of sorts – the kind of prey that even the most ethically demanding paleontologist would find perfectly acceptable.

Continued at “New Look Suggests This Dinosaur Is No Beast

Based on the ‘Biology Letters‘ open access paper “Prey choice and cannibalistic behaviour in the theropod Coelophysis” (pdf)

John Latter / Jorolat
Evolution Research

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