NIGHTMARE GOOSE DINOSAUR DISCOVERY LOOKS JUST LIKE A BIRD OF TODAY’S WORLD
In the latest interesting dinosaur discovery news, we bring you the Natovenator. The name sounds like a great character from a video game character, but is (was, actually) an animal from roughly 70 million years ago. Scientists found the dinosaur remains in Southern Mongolia, and it is a species we’ve never seen or imagined before. But this time, this dinosaur looks quite a bit like many birds we see flying around today. Frankly, it looks like a nightmare goose! But the Natovenator couldn’t fly, and paleontologists say this is a likely case of convergent evolution.
NIGHTMARE GOOSE, OR NATOVENATOR, BRINGS HOME HOW TODAY’S BIRDS ARE DINOSAURS
In other words, the Natovenator and any of the gooses of today evolved to look alike completely separately and are not related. Well, duh! But I must say that ever since we have understood that birds are actually the remaining vestiges of dinosaurs (not slow, lumbering reptiles), that I have often and continually wondered what the birds of today tell us about the dinosaurs of the past. The fact that I see Canadian geese almost every day makes this discovery a perfect one to feed that imagination. Because we think that this Nightmare Goose swam and dove underwater hunting its prey.
BUT 70 MILLION YEAR OLD NIGHTMARE GOOSE WAS ALSO THE SIZE OF A BIRD, AT ONLY 1 FOOT LONG
And, well, that’s both scary and amazing. Because next to the variously aggressive geese in my area, there are also Cormorants, who swim and dive underwater hunting fish, just like the Natovenator polydontus. And that name means “swimming hunter with many teeth.” And while my brain sees the word “dinosaur” and I assume this Nightmare Goose was 20 feet long, I’m totally wrong. The Natovenator was only about 1 foot long. Which means this dinosaur was literally like a bird. A bird with a lot of teeth, that could swim and dive underwater like many can today. It will only feed my imagination when I look at birds today and wonder what their giant (or not) forbears were really like.
I can’t help wondering if it quacked like a duck….