New 'Thunder Thighs' dinosaur species discovered at OU museum
A new dinosaur species was discovered among pieces of a dinosaur skeleton held at the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History.
Author Mike Taylor described the new species, the Brontomerus Mcintoshi, or “Thunder Thighs,” in his publication in the journal Acta Palaeontologica Polonica.
Museum curator Richard L. Cifelli, a co-author of the publication, led a team which helped recover the dinosaur skeleton fragments in Utah in the mid-1990s.
Pieces from an adult and juvenile skeleton were looted by commercial fossil hunters, but the team was able to recover some bones from the shoulder, hip , ribs and vertebrae, along with other fragments, which have been held at the museum since.
The dinosaur was noted for its powerful thigh muscles, revealed by the unique shape of the dinosaur’s hip bone. These unusually large thighs were most likely used for kicking, Taylor said.
The dinosaur is not on display at the museum because the bone pieces are not in a condition to be displayed.
“There is scientific value, but not exhibition value,” said Linda Coldwell, public relations and marketing officer for the museum.
The bones are held in the museum’s research collection and are available to researchers across the world for scientific purposes, Coldwell said.