New tyrannosaurus species named ‘Reaper of Death’ found by farming couple.
by Tracey Shelton,
An illustration shows the head of a dinosaur with ridges around it’s mouth and long sharp teeth. The dinosaur lived in the late Cretaceous Period, making it the oldest known tyrannosaur from North America. (Illustration Supplied: Julius Csotonyi)
The new species stood roughly 2.4m high with teeth longer than 70mm. Ridges along its jaw were probably covered in colourful scales
Alberta, Canada, is one of the top five places in the world for dinosaur discoveries.
Thanatotheristes degrootorum stalked what is now North America more than 79 million years ago, during the late Cretaceous Period, making it the region’s oldest-known tyrannosaur.
The first part of the apex predator’s name, Thanatotheristes, means “reaper of death”, while the second part, degrootorum, honours John and Sandra De Groot, the couple who made the fossil discovery.
Researchers said the new find gave them more insights into the evolution of tyrannosaurs — a group of large predatory dinosaurs that includes the famous Tyrannosaurus rex.