Chinese, Iranian scientists discover ferocious dinosaur tracks

China Daily Published: 2017-07-13 18:36:39
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Xing Lida, an associate professor at China University of Geosciences, holds a piece containing the footprints of a Deinonychus. [Photo by Xing Lida]

Xing Lida, an associate professor at China University of Geosciences, holds a piece containing the footprints of a Deinonychus. [Photo by Xing Lida]

Paleontologists from China and Iran have found tracks of two-toed carnivorous dinosaurs in the Alborz Mountains in Iran.

The tracks were exposed during construction of a highway in recent years.

Paleontologists believe they belong to the Deinonychus, a type of dinosaur famous for its ferocious appearance in the Jurassic Park series. The common feature of Deinonychus is the huge spring-like second toe, which it used for hunting.

The killer toes of Deinonychus. [Photo by Xing Lida]

The killer toes of Deinonychus. [Photo by Xing Lida]

Deinonychus tracks were first discovered in Sichuan in China in the early 1990s, Xing Lida, an associate professor at China University of Geosciences, said. Since then other tracks have been discovered in Shandong, Gansu, Sichuan of China and the southern part of South Korea.

Influenced by Jurassic Park, the public may think that Deinonychus hunt in groups. However, the fossil shows that it likely hunted alone.

A well-preserved footprint of Deinonychus [Photo by Xing Lida]

A well-preserved footprint of Deinonychus [Photo by Xing Lida]

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