top of page

Dilophosaurus had semi OPPOSABLE THUMBS

In Case you missed it!

Dilophosaurus had semi OPPOSABLE THUMBS?

UCBerkley confirmed.

It’s a well-known fact that Dilophosaurus was one of the very few dinosaurs in the Jurassic Park franchise that is actually from the Jurassic Period. In the movie this thought to be juvenile Diloph was only about 4 feet tall with a large flapping skin frill made up by Steven Spielberg to resemble the famous Chlamydosaurus (Frilled-necked Lizard living in northern Australia today).

In reality the apex early Jurassic predator was one of the most well adapted and unique theropod dinosaurs nature created. Living around 190 million years ago, its species stretched from north America to China while they were connected in the super continent, Pangaea. Unlike the movie depiction, estimates of this carnivore’s height range from 7-9 feet and quite possible reached over 20 feet in length. But there are 3 adaptations that set this animal aside from the few early Jurassic predators that we know of.

1. The premaxilla was weakly attached to the maxilla (the following bone of the upper jaw), only connecting at the middle of the palate, with no connection at the side. This left a gap between itself and the maxilla called the subnarial gap (also termed a "kink" or “notch”). Other early predators called coelophysoids had a similar notch in the premaxilla. This Notch is also present in many carnivores who had a taste for aquatic life. There is a very good chance that Dilophosaurus and other late Triassic and early Jurassic predators were piscivorous (Fish eaters).

2. This big birdie could squat! Dinosaur footprints give us something even more incredible: fossilized behavior. Dilophosaurus has been tentatively credited with leaving an exceptional set of tracks in present-day Utah. Clearly made by an animal at rest, these prints include both fore- and hindlimb impressions. While squatting down for a breather, their maker’s palms—in classical bird-like fashion—faced each other via an upright, “clapping” position. This also suggests that Dilophosaurus was a Very agile predator. Reaching speeds over 35MPH and capable of maneuvering tight corners and turns.

3. Lastly and I personally think this is one of the most unique adaptations, OPPOSABLE THUMBS!!! Let’s not forget that this predator had formattable sharp claws on both the fore-and hind limbs but what sets it apart even further is the fact that this animal could literally grab its prey! There have been some heated debates on whether or not this is an opposable thumb and not just a twisted thumb like some other theropods. But according to a study at UC Berkeley there are more paleontologists then not that believe this animal was able to reach out and grab in a similar way that we do. Makes sense when fishing.

All these facts combined; I would have to say that Jurassic Park missed out on a great opportunity to have this movie dinosaur be scary just the way it naturally was. I want to see how many of you out there stand on a REAL Dilophosaurus vs REAL Utahraptor showdown. Who would win and why?

Featured Posts
Check back soon
Once posts are published, you’ll see them here.
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page