Aug. 11th, 2014

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Dilophosaurus wetherilli was considerably different from how it was depicted in Jurassic Park. At roughly the height of an adult human and 23 feet long, it was quite a bit larger, plus it lacked the lizard-like frill the movie gave it - and nothing indicates that it would have spit venom, either, though to be fair, it's hard to completely rule out something like that. It seems unnecessary, though - in the Early Jurassic of western North America, it was already a large and formidable predator based simply on its heavy jaws and sharp teeth.

Similarly, no direct evidence of feathers exist in specimens of this dinosaur. One imprint of a sitting Dilophosaurus was once thought to show feathers through trace marks around the animal's feet and abdomen, but later analysis indicated the markings may have been left by plants the dinosaur sat on, or perhaps were the result of erosion. Nevertheless, the chances are very good that Dilophosaurus was feathered, given how many of its relatives were.

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Lauren Helton

September 2014

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