Deinonychus Facts

Deinonychus Facts
Deinonychus was a bird-like dromaeosaurid dinosaur closely related to Velociraptor (they were the members of the same family). Deinonychus lived in North America 115 to 110 million years ago (early Cretaceous Period). First fossil of Deinonychus was found in Montana in 1931, but it wasn't properly identified and officially declared as a new species until the 1969. Deinonychus lived in floodplains and swampy areas. Aside from Montana, fossils of Deinonychus were also found in Wyoming, Oklahoma, Maryland and Utah.
Interesting Deinonychus Facts:
Deinonychus had been 5 feet long, 11 feet tall and it weighed between 150 to 175 pounds.
Deinonychus had large head, slender skull, flexible neck, long arms with large hands and semi-rigid tail that was used as a counterbalance for the rest of the body.
Even though body of some closely related species of dinosaurs (such as Velociraptor) were covered with feathers at least during some part of their life, there are no evidence that support hypothesis that Deinonychus was also feathered.
Deinonychus had three fingers on the front feet and four fingers on the hind feet. All fingers were equipped with sharp, curved claws. 5-inches-long, sickle-shaped claw on the second finger on the hind feet was used as a weapon both for killing of prey and against predators.
Name "Deinonychus" means "terrible claw". It refers to the prominent, hooked claw on the second finger of the hind feet.
Deinonychus walked on the hind legs (bipedal animal).
Deinonychus was a carnivore. Its diet was based on various animals.
Deinonychus had weak bite, roughly the same as the bite of an alligator.
Jaws of Deinonychus were filled with 60 to 70 sharp, backward-oriented teeth. Aside from teeth, Deinonychus used its large hands with sharp claws to kill the prey.
Researchers believe that Deinonychus traveled and hunted in groups.
Deinonychus triggered idea that birds evolved from dinosaurs. Its arms were anatomically very similar with arms of Archeopteryx, unusual animal with characteristics of both birds and dinosaurs.
Deinonychus was represented as highly intelligent in the movie "Jurassic Park". However, its actual IQ is unknown and impossible to estimate. In the best case, its IQ was similar to an IQ of ostrich.
Deinonychus was very fast animal thanks to its stiff tail which was especially helpful when Deinonychus had to run and quickly change direction.
Based on the fossil evidence and discovery of Deinonychus near the egg, scientists concluded that one of the parents was sitting on the eggs when it died. Brooding is not typical for lizards, but it is for birds.
Hypothesis that Deinonychus has been sitting on the eggs during the incubation period leads to another conclusion. To ensure proper temperature for development of eggs, animal needs to generate heat, which means that Deinonychus was warm-blooded creature.

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