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Lot
49318

FINE "BIRD-DINOSAUR" SKELETON. ...

2012 May 20 Natural History & Fine Minerals Signature Auction- New York #6068

 
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Auction Ended On: May 20, 2012
Item Activity: 1 Internet/mail/phone bidders
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Location: Center 548
548 W. 22nd St.
New York, NY 10011

Description:
FINE "BIRD-DINOSAUR" SKELETON
Troodontidae: Jinfengopteryx elegans
Cretaceous
Central Asia
The Troodontidae were small to medium-sized Theropod Raptors that flourished at the end of the dinosaurs' reign on Earth, prior to the K/T extinction event of 65 million years ago. They were closely related to the Dromaeosauridae family (meaning "running lizard") and were equipped with long slender legs, and frequently a covering of feathers. As this fine and virtually complete skeleton shows, the Troodontids were relatively small, and certainly equipped to run fast, with very long, slender legs, and large, retractable, sickle-shaped claws on the second toe, which would have been raised whilst running. The name means "wounding tooth" and though the skull is a cast, some sections of the dentries were saved along with a few tiny sharp teeth. Approximately 65-70% of the body is original; the incredibly delicate bones show fine preservation and texture, and superb claws (only one is a replacement, as are sections of the tail). The Troodontids are also distinctive for being one of the very first fossils to have been discovered, described and classified, by Leidy in 1855, from a North American specimen; this is a cousin from Central Asia, finally presented in a running pose on a discreet black armature, 28 inches in length and 17½ inches high.

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