Achillobator

Name: Achillobator ‭(‬Achilles hero‭)‬.
Phonetic: Ah-kill-oh-bate-or.
Named By: Altangerel Perle,‭ ‬Mark A.‭ ‬Norell‭ & ‬Jim Clark‭ ‬-‭ ‬1999.‭
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Dinosauria,‭ ‬Saurischia,‭ ‬Theropoda,‭ ‬Dromaeosauridae,‭ ‬Eudromaeosauria,‭ ‬Dromaeosaurinae.
Species: A.‭ ‬giganticus‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Carnivore.
Size: Estimated‭ ‬6‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: Mongolia,‭ ‬Dornogovi Province‭ ‬-‭ ‬Bayan Shireh Formation.
Time period: Turonian to Campanian of the Cretaceous,‭ ‬although further study of the formation that Achillobator came from suggests it may actually date between the Santonian and Cenomanian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial remains including vertebrae,‭ ‬hindlimbs,‭ ‬forelimbs,‭ ‬shoulder,‭ ‬ribs,‭ ‬as well as an upper jaw fragment of the premaxilla with teeth.

       Although discovered in a joint Mongolian and Russian dig in‭ ‬1989,‭ ‬Achillobator did not get named until‭ ‬1999.‭ ‬These remains are very fragmentary but do suggest that Achillobator was a particularly large dromaeosaurid dinosaur.‭ ‬The achilles tendons seem to have been particularly well developed,‭ ‬probably to account for the extra size and weight of the body,‭ ‬and were referenced in the naming of the genus.
       Achillobator has in the past been accused of being a fossil chimera,‭ ‬which in the simplest terms means that the fossil material attributed to the genus actually represents more than one kind of dinosaur.‭ ‬The main support for this theory is that the pubis‭ (‬most forward bone of the hips‭) ‬points vertically down.‭ ‬In all other known dromaeosaurids the pubis points backwards similar to birds,‭ ‬something that often leads to the pubis pointing in the same direction as the ischium‭ (‬the bone at the rear of the hips‭)‬.‭ ‬Despite this claim however some of the skeletal remains of Achillobator were found partially articulated,‭ ‬and the other bones all show‭ ‬dromaeosaurid characteristics.‭ ‬General opinion today points to Achillobator being a dromaeosaurid,‭ ‬but one with a unique hip structure.
       Additional study of Achillobator‭ ‬has yielded the conclusion that it was most closely related to the dromaeosaurids Dromaeosaurus and Utahraptor,‭ ‬the latter being a particularly large dromaeosaurid.

Further reading
- A new maniraptoran theropod - Achillobator giganticus (Dromaeosauridae) - from the Upper Cretaceous of Burkhant, Mongolia - Contributions of the Mongolian-American Paleontological Project, 101: 1–105 - A. Perle, M. A. Norell & J. Clark - 1999.



----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Random favourites