Dinosaurs did hunt prey in packs
Velociraptors really did behave like wolves and hunt down their prey in packs, as depicted in the movie Jurassic Park, a top dinosaur expert has said.
In common with other bird-like “raptor” dinosaurs they were highly intelligent, according to Dr Stephen Brusatte from the University of Edinburgh.
Living around 73 million years ago velociraptors were small but vicious, measuring about seven feet long and weighing up to 15kg (33 pounds).
On each foot it carried a deadly weapon, a razorsharp sickle-like claw that may have been used to rip apart prey.
Unlike the movie version, the real velociraptor was at least partly covered in feathers.
US-born Dr Brusatte said: “Many dinosaurs were much smarter than we used to give them credit for.
“Some of these meat-eaters, like the raptors, were probably in the mammal zone of intelligence.”
The evidence that velociraptors hunted like wolves comes from bone beds – dense collections of fossils in one place – and preserved foot prints, he explained.
Dr Brusatte added: “There is fossil evidence that some predators did hunt in packs.
“The velociraptor-type dinosaurs probably did, and even big tyrannosaurs too.”