Scientists Make Exciting Dinosaur Footprint Discovery On The Isle Of Skye

     FRENZY Dinosaur enthusiasts are scrambling to examine the ultra-rare fossils

Scientists have discovered dozens of giant dinosaur footprints in Scotland dating back 170 million years.

University of Edinburgh researchers also found footprints from the T-rex's older cousin, the theropods in a similar location, The Telegraph said. Upon close examination, a group of experts consisting of researchers from the University of Edinburgh, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Scotland's Staffin Museum determined that the footprints were indeed traces left by Jurassic dinosaurs.

The footprints are massive and researchers found them on the north-east coast of Scotland's Isle of Skye. But there's also a smattering of theropods - carnivores that walked on their hind legs, such as Tyrannosaurus, gathering around what was once a shallow lagoon.

As per the report, the team of researchers, including some researchers from Edinburgh University discovered around 50 footprints of the dinosaurs.

According to Mashable, scientists couldn't determine the specific species of dinosaur.

The paper discusses the importance of the Middle Jurassic, referring to it as a key era in dinosaur evolution at a time when sauropods grew to massive sizes and the early meat-eating tyrannosaurs diversified.

The research team measured, photographed, and analyzed the footprints on the Isle of Skye's Trotternish peninsula.

One of the most striking sauropod footprints at the site. Another set was found in 2015, but they were slightly later and smaller.

The find has been deemed "globally important" because the discovery of fossils from the Middle Jurassic period has been limited to a handful of sites around the world to date. The study was also funded by the Association of Women Geologists, Derek and Maureen Moss, Edinburgh Geological Society, and the Edinburgh Zoo. The oldest dinosaur fossil discovery in the United Kingdom is thought to have been of a 200-million-old Tyrannosaurus Rex relative, the Dracoraptor hanigani, found on a Welsh beach in 2016.

She added: "This site is a useful building block for us to continue fleshing out a picture of what dinosaurs were like on Skye in the Middle Jurassic".

These footprints are a rare find, and not just because they show that these dinosaurs may have felt right at home splashing through the shallow waters of the ancient lagoon that used to be there.

Paige dePolo, who led the study, conducted the work while a working towards a Masters research qualific-ation in palaeontology and geobiology.

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