New research sheds very different light on Jurassic Park Dilophosaurus

One of the most memorable scenes of 1993 jurassic park It’s when the Crested and Frilled Dilophosaurus spits poisonous venom at annoying computer nerd Dennis Nedry as he tries to make his way to the dock with embryo samples stolen in a torrential downpour. His fate is sealed as he returns to his broken down Jeep and tries to get the vehicle out of a mudslide and finds himself hosting a prehistoric meal instead.

A new research paper written by paleontologists at the University of Texas and published in the Journal of paleontology rewrites the official Dilophosaurus record book by painting them in a very different light from that portrayed in director Steven Spielberg’s iconic blockbuster.

Not knowing much about the striking creature, the author of the source novel, Michael Crichton, production designers Stan Winston, and studio writers took several liberties with the way Dilophosaurus was presented, attributes that came to light. now prove to be extremely inaccurate.

Recent discoveries have revealed that Dilophosaurus was much larger than what was depicted in the movie, often reaching a length of 20 feet, tipping the scales at nearly 700 pounds, and looking much less like a lizard and bird than filmmakers and paleontologists first believed. An adult adult is estimated to be about half the size of an average Tyrannosaurus Rex. It existed about 183 million years ago, at the beginning of the Jurassic.

“This is pretty much the best and the worst dinosaurs,” study lead author Adam Marsh explained in a press release. “Until this study, no one knew what Dilophosaurus looked like or how it evolved. Dilophosaurus is clearly designed to be a great macropredator. It is a large animal that was built to eat other animals.

Earlier descriptions of the creature were evidenced by its thin bony skull crest, a vibrating neck collar that flared out when angry or provoked, a weak and underdeveloped jawbone, and the ability to eject a paralyzing substance for defensive tactics or for slaughtering prey. But unlike these mistaken fictitious representations, Marsh and his crew discovered that the Dilophosaurus possessed a powerful set of jaws and a fortified skeletal system with air pockets similar to the structure of modern birds.

It was in 1940 when the first fossilized remains of Dilophosaurus were unearthed on Navajo Nation land near Tuba City, Ariz., Specimens Marsh examined to create a clearer account of behavior and appearance. physics of the beast.

Using an algorithm to compare and contrast an assortment of available remains with the original fossil, Marsh was able not only to confirm that it was Dilophosaurus, but also to exhibit a large evolutionary gap to infer that there might be cousins ​​not discovered somewhere still buried.

The earliest research papers dating back to 1954 allowed for a confusing snapshot of the description of the dinosaur at best.

For their eye-opening research, Marsh and his team were able to inspect well-known specimens of Dilophosaurus belonging to the Kayenta Formation in Arizona and belonging to the Navajo Nation. The University of California Paleontology Museum contains three of the skeletons, while the Jackson School Museum of Earth History is home to the couple discovered by study co-author Timothy Rowe.

“One of the most important responsibilities of our museum is conservation,” said Matthew Brown, director of the Vertebrate Paleontology Collections. “We are very excited to help share these iconic Navajo Nation fossils with the world through research and education, and preserve them for future generations. “

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