Velociraptors were made famous by the popular Jurassic Park movies, which showed that the agile dinosaurs hunted in deadly packs. A new study elaborated by paleontologists argues that this wasn’t the case as the creatures did not engage in pack hunting.
It is theorized that they hunted individually but may have attacked the same target as other velociraptors, a trait that is also encountered among Komodo dragons and crocodiles. There is also a significant difference between the diet of adult and young velociraptors, which suggests that the parents did not feed their children.
The scientific name of the species is Velociraptorstor, but it was simplified in the movie to make it easier to pronounce. According to one expert, raptorial dinosaurs are featured as pack hunters, but the amount of information related to such a probability is quite slim. Since the creatures went extinct millions of years ago, experts have to rely on indirect evidence.
The new study on Velociraptors
Dinosaurs featured in Jurassic Park have inspired the works of the famous Yale paleontologist John Ostrom. In his works, Ostrom argued that dinosaurs travel in packs and work together to hunt and consume larger prey.
However, birds and crocodilians, who share dinosaurs as common ancestors, do not hunt in a group, nor do they aim to take down prey that is considerably older. It is also important to take into account that behaviors like pack hunting do not fossilize, and there is no way to tell if the animals did collaborate.
A major argument against the pack theory is represented by the fact that the adults and the young had a different diet, and this doesn’t happen in the case of pack hunting as the members of the pack will consume similar prey. An analysis of the teeth of Cretaceous crocodilians and a raptor has shown a distinctive dietary transition as they matured. More data can be found in a paper on Velociraptors published in a scientific journal.
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