Archive May 2013
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Time Travel Tuesday: Citipati
Unlike the other dinosaurs we have discovered, this particular dinosaur shares a few characteristics with the birds of today’s world. Here are some clues to help you find it:
• Nine feet long.
• Long neck.
• Short Tail.
• Huge crest on head.
• Toothless beak.
• Often guarding its eggs by situating itself on top of the nests.
Have you found the Citipati yet? Perhaps you should look for a nest, because these birds were often protecting their eggs by covering them with their bodies. This kept the eggs warm and hidden from predators. Paleontologists have found fossilized Citipati eggs that were nearly seven inches long and oval shaped. They believe Citipati nests could hold as many as 22 eggs at a time. Make sure you are looking on the ground, because even though these dinosaurs look a lot like birds, they were non-avian and incapable of flying. If you do happen to stumble upon a Citipati nest, it is most likely being watched over by the father Citipati. Scientists have found evidence that has led them to believe the father took care of the nest and baby dinosaurs.
The discovery of the Citipati was fairly recent, so information regarding these bird-like dinosaurs is still being revealed. We know that the Citipati was a carnivore and it had a toothless beak. The Citipati discovery also helped link the birds of today to dinosaurs of the past. However, a lot more is still out there to be learned about the Citipati. What can you uncover while observing them? For a first-hand experience, visit Dinosaurs! at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo now through September 15.
Dinosaurs! is presented by Dollar Bank with support from Discount Drug Mart, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District and Cleveland Clinic Children’s.