The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Saturday, August 23, 2014


Perot Museum of Nature and Science: Pint-sized tyrannosaur was king of the Arctic
An employee of a cleaning company cleans between life-size models of dinosaurs at the Dinosaur Park in Kleinwelka near Bautzen, eastern Germany on March 5, 2014. After the park's winter break, more than 200 life-sized dinosaur sculptures are refurbished for the re-opening on April 1, 2014. AFP PHOTO / DPA / ARNO BURGI.

By: Kerry Sheridan

WASHINGTON (AFP).- A pint-sized tyrannosaur braved the frigid Arctic and feasted on fellow dinosaurs 70 million years ago, according to a report Wednesday on a new species identified from fossilized skull bones in Alaska.

Scientists have crowned the fierce creature the "polar bear lizard," or Nanuqsaurus hoglundi, and they say it stood as tall as a modern man but was half the size of its very close cousin, T. rex, the "lizard king."

An analysis of several skull bones and teeth are described in the journal PLoS ONE by Anthony Fiorillo and Ronald Tykoski of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Texas.

Roving across land that was dark for half the year and prone to rainy, snowy and frigid spells, the miniature tyrannosaur likely had a strong sense of smell and may also have had sharp vision to hunt prey at night.

It was also just as big as another common meat-eating dinosaur found in Alaska, the Troodon, Fiorillo told AFP.

"To us that is a really cool thing because it is telling us, we think, that there is something about the Arctic environment of 70 million years ago that selected for an optimal body size for a successful predator."

Skull fragments tell a story
The bones were found on a bluff above the Colville River in northern Alaska.

Remains of the much larger T. rex have typically been found further south, scattered across the western United States where the climate would have been warmer.

The area inside the Arctic Circle where the dinosaur bones were found was not as cold 70 million years ago, and was probably on par with modern day Seattle, Washington, or Calgary, Canada.

The tyrannosaur's skull fragments were found in a hole along with a horned dinosaur it likely killed and tried to eat, based on the tooth-size gashes in the plant-eater's bones, researchers said.

At the time of publication, researchers had four bone pieces, some of which were crucial because they showed the head growth of an adult, rather than a juvenile, and allowed scientists to estimate the overall skull size.

Since then, more fragments have been unearthed, Fiorillo said.

"We have a pretty complete picture of the skull roof now. The beauty of that is that the sediment that filled it in preserves the shape of the brain and we can see that this animal also had a well developed sense of smell."

University of Chicago paleontologist Paul Sereno, who was not involved in the research, described the jaw and skull fragments as "pretty exciting."

When fossils of dinosaurs were first found in the Arctic three decades ago, they were initially mistaken for whale bones.

Early on, some experts believed the dinosaurs may have migrated, or that juveniles would have been unable to survive there, but more recent discoveries have debunked those ideas.

"We couldn't get ourselves to believe that they lived up there in the darkness," Sereno told AFP, adding that recent discoveries have changed that way of thinking.

"They must have been managing somehow. We know that reindeer change their diet to eat all sorts of strange things."

The new species' name, Nanuqsaurus hoglundi, is a nod to the Inuit name for polar bear, Nanook, and the natural gas tycoon Forrest Hoglund who helped fund the Texas museum where Arctic dinosaur bones are displayed.



© 1994-2014 Agence France-Presse



Today's News

March 15, 2014

Discoveries and fresh-to-the-market works of art dominate TEFAF Maastricht 2014

Bowdoin College Museum of Art acquires antique camera owned by Winslow Homer

Robert E. Meyerhoff and Rheda Becker's pledge to transform the National Gallery of Art's collection

European masters of Modernism featured at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

See classic New York through the lens of Bill Cunningham at the New-York Historical Society

Tokyo police arrest a 36-year-old unemployed man in Anne Frank diary vandalism case

"Wols Photographer: The Guarded Look" opens at Martin Gropius Bau in Berlin

A survey exhibition of the celebrated and influential photographer Daido Moriyama opens at Simon Lee Gallery

"Pictured and Seen: Objects in Portraits" opens at the National Portrait Gallery in London

Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego sellects Selldorf Architects to design planned expansion

Perot Museum of Nature and Science: Pint-sized tyrannosaur was king of the Arctic

Two great Persian illustrated manuscripts for sale at Bonhams in London

First solo show of Brazilian/German artist Janaina Tschäpe in Hong Kong opens at Edouard Malingue Gallery

A place where artists have the right to fail: Stories of Espai 10 and Espai 13 at the Fundació Joan Miró

The union of new art and art history in new installation at the Cincinnati Art Museum

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen stages small retrospective to celebrate Co Westerik's ninetieth birthday

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam presents works by Paulien Oltheten and Anouk Kruithof

Exhibition at South London Gallery restages Iraqi pavilion at Venice Biennale

"Urushi Lacquer: The Graceful Soul of Wood" on view at Ippodo Gallery in New York

Exhibition of paintings by Julian Stanczak opens at David Richard Gallery

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Mystery over massive Alexander the Great-era tomb unearthed in northern Greece

2.- An ancient money box containing a large rare hoard of coins found in Israel

3.- Robin Williams' portrait installed today at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington

4.- The Baltimore Museum of Art announces three new contemporary exhibitions in fall

5.- New Aspen Art Museum designed by architect Shigeru Ban opens to the public

6.- New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art launches 82nd & Fifth app in 12 languages

7.- MoMA online-only publication features new research on Pablo Picasso and Cubism

8.- Volunteers needed for massive Smithsonian digitization project

9.- Tate Britain welcomes home John Everett Millais's Ophelia and Rossetti’s The Beloved

10.- Bogart estate: Hollywood golden age icon Lauren Bacall dead at 89 in New York



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Rmz. - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site