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November 26, 2022

Reconstruction of the ecosystem in Bahariya Oasis 98 million years ago

Researchers have discovered a new kind of large-bodied, meat-eating dinosaur (as yet unnamed) from the abelisaurid group of theropods. The fossil was found in a middle Cretaceous-aged rock unit known as the Bahariya Formation, which is exposed in the Bahariya Oasis of the Western Desert of Egypt. In this reconstruction of the Bahariya Oasis ecosystem as it was approximately 98 million years ago, the newly discovered abelisaurid (right) confronts Spinosaurus (left center, with fish in jaws) and Carcharodontosaurus (right center). In the background left, a herd of the sauropod Paralititan (long-necked herbivorous) warily regards these predators, while a flock of a still-unnamed pterosaur soars above.

[Research supported by U.S. National Science Foundation grant EAR 1525915.]

Learn more in the NSF Research News story Bizarre meat-eating dinosaur joins rogues' gallery of giant predators from Sahara Desert. (Date of image: June 2022; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: Nov. 26, 2022)

Credit: Andree McAfee/The Royal Society (Available under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International)

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