Conchoraptor ‭(‬Conch thief‭)

Short Info

Conchoraptor ‭(‬Conch thief‭)

Phonetic : Conch-o-rap-tor.

Named By : Rinchen Barsbold‭ ‬-‭ ‬1986

Diet : Carnivore

Size : Estimated 1.5-2 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Small Theropod

Type Species : C.‭ ‬gracilis‭ (‬type‭)‬

Found in : Mongolia‭ ‬-‭ ‬Barun Goyot Formation

When it Lived : Late Cretaceous, 81-76 million years ago

Conchoraptor (meaning “conch plunderer”) is a genus that belongs to an oviraptorid dinosaur that lived in The late Cretaceous Period of what is today Asia.


Conchoraptor in nestKabacchi, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Conchoraptor was a tiny dinosaur, measuring a mere 2 to 3 metres (3.3-6.6 feet) in length. In contrast to many other oviraptorids Conchoraptor had no head crest. As with its relatives they also had no teeth. In lieu of teeth, the oviraptorids were equipped with strong beaks that were possibly specially designed to crush shells of mollusks. Conchoraptor’s skull Conchoraptor was heavily pneumatized with the majority bone hollow. The internal connections between the ears served as resonance chambers as well as enhanced hearing.


Conchoraptor gracilisJaime A. Headden (User:Qilong), CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


First found in the red beds of Hermiin Tsav of the Early Maastrichtian Nemegt Formation by a Polish-Mongolian team in 1971 The scientists were of the opinion that Conchoraptor was an infant Oviraptor and that the missing crest had been growing as the animal reached sexual maturity. A further examination of skeletons from multiple species revealed that Conchoraptor was part of a brand new Genus. Conchoraptor’s hands were the primary reason scientists decided to break the animal from Oviraptor. The anatomy of the hands suggested that they could be an evolutionary intermediary between the hands from Ajancingenia and Oviraptor which made it clear that the animal wasn’t an animal belonging to a recognized species.

The species that is the type from this new species Conchoraptor gracilis, was first described in the name of Barsbold in 1986. The name of the species originates in the Greek konkhemeaning “mussel”, and Latin raptor, “plunderer”. This name is in line with Barsbold’s belief that oviraptorids instead of eating eggs primarily as was thought to be the case they may have been specially designed to consume Mollusks. The name itself refers to “gracile” in Latin. The Holotype can be described as IGM 100/20, a fragmentary skull skeleton. In the following years, around twenty-six specimens had been formal identified as belonging to the species.

Source: Wikipedia