Imagine Tyrannosaurus rex with feathers—only one of the surprising theories put forth in this title by the author of Albertosaurus: Death of a Predator
also part of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Alberta, Canada, "Discoveries of Palaeontology" series.
Here, Keiran focuses on the 1995 discovery of a rare fossil ornithomimid, one of the small toothless theropod dinosaurs that resembles an ostrich and may have a common ancestor with modern birds. She recounts the excavation of the fossil step-by-step with many full-color photographs of the scientists at work. She describes new tools palaeontologists use to make sense of the past, for example digital scan, computerized tomography in which repeated scans are used to reconstruct fossils in three dimensions. She gives some of the latest scientific theories about the evolution of birds, stating: "It is believed that feathers evolved from dinosaur scales before the appearance of tyrannosaurs and bird-mimic dinosaurs, making it possible that Tyrannosaurus and the Ornithomimus had their own coverings of feathers." Interspersed with the more straightforward text, she provides "Bird-Mimic Chronicles" the story of the life of a particular Ornithomimus from hatching to adulthood, mating, raising a family, and eventual death. The text of this dinosaur title is challenging and less able readers may have difficulty keeping the various themes apart, but those who persist will be rewarded. Includes a glossary, timeline of reptiles, and a "Meet the Scientist" section. Current and intriguing. (Nonfiction. 10+)Read full book review >