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ZoomDinosaurs.com
ALL ABOUT DINOSAURS!
What is a Dinosaur? Dino Info Pages Dinosaur Coloring Print-outs Name That Dino Biggest, Smallest, Oldest,... Evolution of Dinosaurs Dinos and Birds Dino Myths

MEGARAPTOR
"Huge Robber"
Megaraptor Printout

Megaraptor Brief Fact Sheet

Megaraptor

ANATOMY
Megaraptor was a large, terrifying late Cretaceous predator with two enormous, sickle-like toe claws. It was a huge, lightly built, fast-moving, agile, bipedal (walked on two legs), bird-like dinosaur. It had a curved, flexible neck, and a big head with sharp, serrated teeth in very powerful jaws.

The second toe on each foot had a 14 inch (35 cm) sickle-like claw and the other toes had smaller claws. When alive, this claw would have been sheathed in a horny, keratinous material much like our fingernails, making the claw even bigger, longer and sharper. The tail was probably used for balance and fast turning. It may have had a relatively large brain and large eyes. Megaraptor was about 20-26 feet (6-8 m) long.

Megaraptor


WHEN MEGARAPTOR LIVED
Megaraptor lived during the late Cretaceous period, about 90-84 million years ago.

BEHAVIOR AND INTELLIGENCE
Megaraptor, along with the other advanced theropods (like the closely-related dromaeosaurids), were among the smartest of the dinosaurs, as calculated from their brain:body weight ratio (or EQ). This made them very deadly predators.

EQ


DIET
Megaraptor was a carnivore, a meat eater. It probably ate just about anything it could slash and tear apart. If it hunted in packs, Megaraptor could probably kill any prey it desired.

LOCOMOTION
Megaraptor Megaraptor walked on two slender, bird-like legs; it must have been a fast runner, considering its leg length and light weight. When it ran, it rotated its huge middle-toe-claw upwards and ran on the other toes.

DISCOVERY OF FOSSILS
Incomplete Megaraptor remains were found in 1996 in Northwest Patagonia, Argentina, by paleontologist Fernando E. Novas. Novas named it in 1998 (when it was still thought to be a raptor, hence the name). Fossils included a huge sickle-shaped claw, metatarsal, ulna, and a finger bone.

CLASSIFICATION
Megaraptor was a Saurischian dinosaur, the order of lizard-hipped dinosaurs. It was a theropod and a coelurosaur. It was more primitive than the dromaeosaurid (the smartest dinosaurs, or "raptors," which had wider feet and included Velociraptor, Deinonychus, Hulsanpes, Dromaeosaurus, Utahraptor, and others).

Some scientists believe that Megaraptor is actually an adult Unenlagia

The type species of the genus Megaraptor is M. namunhuaiquii (Novas, 1998); this species is named for the Mapuche (an Argentinian Indian language) word for "foot lance".

LINKS and ACTIVITIES
Megaraptor Printout

Megaraptor Brief Fact Sheet





Information Sheets About Dinosaurs
(and Other Prehistoric Creatures)

Just click on an animal's name to go to that information sheet. If the dinosaur you're interested in isn't here, check the Dinosaur Dictionary or the list of Dinosaur Genera. Names with an asterisk (*) were not dinosaurs.
How to write a great dinosaur report.

For dinosaur printouts, click here.

For brief dinosaur fact sheets, click here.




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