Interesting news from the world of science!
Have we found the biggest dinosaur ever? In true scientific fashion – science being by necessity a tentative discipline – the answer is “maybe.” Excerpt:
Paleontologists working in Argentina have uncovered the bones of what may be the largest dinosaur ever. I want to stress the uncertainty in that opening sentence. Despite various news outlets already calling the contest, we don’t yet know which titanic dinosaur wins the superlative of “biggest creature ever to walk the Earth.”
Don’t misunderstand me – the new find is certainly worth getting excited about. Found by a farm worker in the vicinity of La Flecha, Argentina, and excavated by a crew from the Museo Paleontológico Egidio Feruglio, the 95 million year old site contains over 150 bones belonging to seven individuals of the same long-necked, heavy-bodied species. Even better, the dinosaur might be new to science, and the presence of so many specimens in one spot could yield detailed insights into the growth, ecology, and behavior of the dinosaur.
Mind you that behavior doesn’t fossilize, but fossils – and especially groups of fossils- can lead to insights about behavior. How? Herd makeup, for one thing, the ration of male to female, young to old, and so forth. Better still, sometimes paleontologists find preserved trackways, behavior literally recorded in time for us to decipher.
I remain as excited about dinosaurs as when I was a little tad. The new discoveries now are coming fast and furious, at least by the standards of the 1960s when I first started following dino-news. Who knows what they’ll find next?