Oldest dinosaur ancestor discovered

This video is called Walking With Dinosaurs Ep1 – New Blood (part1 of 3).

From New Scientist:

Meet the oldest dino ancestor yet

* 09 October 2010

SKULKING around an ancient floodplain 250 million years ago, the earliest known dinosaur ancestors left footprints just 1 to 2 centimetres long.

The prints, recently discovered in the Holy Cross mountains of central Poland by Steve Brusatte of the American Museum of Natural History in New York, show distinctive toe marks only seen in the dinosaur family. They were made by a four-footed animal no bigger than a domestic cat, that was likely to have been prey to local 8-metre-long crocodiles.

The tracks are 5 million years older than any other dino fossils. They push back the origins of the lineage and show that it evolved immediately after the end of the Permian extinction – the biggest clear-out of life the world has ever seen, when 95 per cent of animal species went extinct (Proceedings of the Royal Society B, DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2010.1746).

T. rex was a cannibal: here.

The Triassic archosaur Postosuchus: here.

A fresh analysis of a fossil found in the 1970s suggests that the family trees for crocodiles, birds and dinosaurs diverged earlier than some may have thought: here.

10 thoughts on “Oldest dinosaur ancestor discovered

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