Hefty thighbones and a sharp hip are descriptions of another new species of dinosaur that has recently been identified. The science world has nicknamed this dinosaur, “Thunder Thighs” because of its massive hind legs that would have been used to ward off predators. The new species’ bones were actually found in 1994 in a Utah quarry and were believed to be a mother and child. In 2007, Michael Taylor of University College London, and his team of paleontologists began to study the bones and classified it as Brontomerus mcintoshi.
What the Brontomerus mcintoshi may have looked like
This new sauropod was more than 45 feet long and weighed up to 6 tons (the size of a large elephant). What make these dinosaurs stand out are not their long tail and neck, but their enormous thighbones and unusually shaped hip. There is a tremendous blade on its hipbone and strong muscles would have been attached there. The paleontologists believed that this dinosaur would use his leg to kick out at predators or to fight for potential mates.
“When we recognized the weird shape of the hip, we wondered what its significance might be, but we concluded that kicking was the most likely,” said Taylor.
Mathew Wedel, an assistant professor of anatomy at Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California, who also studied the bones, said that the Brontomerus (which means “thunder thighs” in Greek), could have attacked predators like a modern-day chicken. “Relentlessly kicking and stomping pursuers to death,” he added. Wedel believes that these sauropods were very ill tempered, like most birds which are dinosaurs’ modern-day descendants.
“In both cases, you’ve got a little brain, you’re permanently paranoid about all these meat-eaters around, and you’re trying to protect your young.” The “thunder thighs” dinosaur was an herbivore and a North American dinosaur, roaming the earth around 110 million years ago during the Cretaceous period. These sauropods are often found in family groups. At that time, the Brontomerus needed a vigorous way to defend themselves and their family from the petrifying raptors and Acrocanthosaurus, a giant predator similar in size to T. rex, that lived right next to the plant-eaters. Their thighs probably evolved as their wish to protect their family did.
These “thunder thighs” dinosaurs were found to have ample front legs, too. Their shoulder blades had “unusual bumps that probably marked the boundaries of muscle attachments.” This means that their forelimbs were powerful as well as their back ones, making them the most athletic of all the dinosaurs. They preferred drier areas where it was rough and hilly. Their “thunder thighs” helped them move their heavy bodies across the hills and rough terrain.
Scientists are discovering new species of dinosaurs all the time now. It’s reported as many as two different types a week. One of the newest dinosaurs discovered is a carnivorous hunchback dinosaur that has scientists mystified.
Not a lot is known about these “thunder thigh” creatures. The quarry where the bones were found had been looted. So much more could have been discovered if they had found a complete dinosaur body, but somebody more than likely took home a souvenir for their mantle.