Legend: Mesoamerica = Mexico and Central America Pre-Columbian = Before Christopher Columbus Amerindian = Indigenous Indians of North and South America Paleoindian/Paleoamerican = The original Black settlers of the Americas The discovery of a bird-like dinosaur in South America has paleontologists rethinking when, where and how one group of raptors evolved.The rooster-sized dinosaur is called Buitreraptor (bwee-tree-rap-tor) gonzalezorum.
"Buitreraptor is one of those special fossils that tells a bigger story about the Earth's history and the timing of evolutionary events," said Peter Makovicky, curator of dinosaurs at The Field Museum."It not only provides definitive evidence for a more global distribution and a longer history for dromaeosaurs than was previously known, but also suggests that dromaeosaurs on northern and southern continents took different evolutionary routes after the landmasses that they had occupied, drifted apart." The Buitreraptor fossil was found in northwestern Patagonia (the southern end of the South America continent) about 700 miles southwest of Buenos Aires.C, hunting peoples had occupied most of North America, south of the glacial ice cap covering the northern part of North America.These men hunted such large grazing mammals as mammoth, mastodon, horse, and camel.Buitreraptor is related to Velociraptor, the presumed cunning killer made famous by Hollywood.
Both belong to a class of birdlike dinosaurs that ran swiftly on two legs and are called dromaeosaurs.
The new find suggests such raptors go back much further in time than previously thought.
Until recently, dromaeosaurs had been found only in Asia and North America and only in the Cretaceous period, which ran from 145 million to 65 million years ago.
Evidence that they existed in the Southern Hemisphere has been mounting.
Today's announcement of a well-preserved fossil represents the first definitive evidence that dromaeosaurs roamed South America as well.
By Gisela Crespo, CNN, April 26, 2017 The remains of a mastodon discovered during a routine excavation in California shows possible human activity in North America 130,000 years ago -- or about 115,000 years earlier than previously thought.