Deltadromeus (Delta runner)
Paul Sereno etal. - 1996
Estimated up to 30 feet in length
D. agilis (type)
Morocco - Bahariya Formation and Kem Kem Beds
Cretaceous, 100 million years ago
Deltadromeus, meaning “delta runner,” was a large theropod dinosaur that lived during the Cretaceous period, approximately 100 million years ago, in what is now northern Africa.
Deltadromeus was a bipedal dinosaur that could grow up to 30 feet in length and weigh up to 1.5 tons. It had a long, slender body, powerful legs, and a long tail. Its skull was relatively short and lightly built compared to other large theropods.
Although not as well-known as some of its contemporaries, such as Tyrannosaurus and Allosaurus, Deltadromeus was an incredibly fast runner, with estimates suggesting it may have been able to reach speeds of up to 40 miles per hour.
The fossil record of Deltadromeus is limited, with only a few fragmentary specimens having been found. This has made it difficult for paleontologists to determine its exact classification and relationships with other theropods.
Some scientists have suggested that Deltadromeus may be related to the family of dinosaurs that includes the famous Velociraptor. Others have proposed that it may be a member of the Spinosauridae family, which includes other theropods that lived in North Africa around the same time.
Despite its limited fossil record, Deltadromeus is an important dinosaur in the study of theropod evolution and the diversity of Cretaceous ecosystems. Its incredible speed and unique features make it a fascinating dinosaur to study and speculate about, and new discoveries may shed more light on its place in the dinosaur family tree.