(Contributed photo by Richard Seimens).

Small but vicious Alberta dinosaur to be discussed in Red Deer

Renowned paleontologist Philip Currie to speak at RDC on March 29

Little-known facts about a dog-sized dinosaur, considered the “quintessential” Alberta raptor, will be shared when renowned paleontologist Philip Currie speaks in Red Deer.

The former curator at Drumheller’s Royal Tyrrell Museum, who’s now teaches at the University of Alberta, will be discussing the Saurornitholestes langstoni on Thursday, March 29, at the Margaret Parsons Theatre at Red Deer College.

The dinosaur that stood no taller than a German Shepherd was thought to have possessed a keen sense of smell, quickness and agility, possibly as a pack hunter.

Like other theropods, Saurornitholestes had a long, curving, blade-like claw on the second toe. This species was more long-legged and lightly built than Velociraptors, but also had large, fang-like teeth in the front of the jaws.

An intact skeleton of the wiry carnivore, excavated in 2014 in Alberta’s Dinosaur Provincial Park by University of Alberta paleontologists, is the only complete specimen of Saurornitholestes known in the world.

These 75-million-year-old bones are now on loan to Japan’s National Museum of Science and Technology, where a team of U of A scientists are continuing to study the skeleton to try to unearth more secrets.

Currie, with a PhD from McGill University, is one of the foremost dinosaur experts in the world, having published more than 225 scientific articles about the growth and variation of extinct reptiles, their anatomy, origins and relationships, and in peer-reviewed journals. He also helped develop an online course, Dino 101, through the U of A, that more than 100,000 students world-wide have taken since 2013.

The scientist most recently received the Romer-Simpson Medal, the highest award issued by the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology for “outstanding scholarly excellence.”

Currie’s 7:30 p.m. talk in Red Deer this month is hosted by the Red Deer River Naturalists. Admission is free, but tickets are required and can be picked up from the Kerry Wood Nature Centre.

red deer river naturalists

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tuesday marks 20th anniversary of Pine Lake tornado

‘Devastation was apparent’ following F3 tornado killed 12 people on July 14, 2000

Red Deer woman loses student visa, ‘has no choice but to leave’ Canada

Victoria Forschle and her family came to Canada in 2008

Red Deer up to four active COVID-19 cases

Province announced 77 new confirmed cases across Alberta Friday

Agriculture trade show is a must, says Red Deer chamber

Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce promotes trade show

NHL’s road to Edmonton and Toronto featured plenty of obstacles

Since early March, the novel coronavirus has affected almost every decision facing… Continue reading

How Conservative leadership hopefuls would address the WE scandal if they win

The ethics commissioner has been called in to see if Trudeau broke conflict-of-interest law

With debt, deficit numbers out, experts say Liberals need plan for growth

Borrowing will push the federal debt past $1 trillion by the end of the fiscal year

Pedestrian-only downtown a hit with residents as St. John’s adapts to pandemic

‘The city really got this right this time. We’re very happy’

Bosnian-Canadians mark 25th anniversary of Srebrenica massacre

‘It’s sad for a child to think that it’s normal, actually, to … have family members killed’

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $35 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the $35 million jackpot… Continue reading

Most Read