A team of paleontologists working in Cretaceous-aged rocks of the Gobi Desert have unearthed a dinosaur fossil containing a comb-like plate very similar to the filter-feeding structure in a duck's bill. An article by Norell, Makovicky and Currie, published in this week's Nature, describes the finding. The dinosaur, Gallimimus, was a fast-running, largish, beaked creature closely related to meat-eating predators such as Tyrannousaurus. This new fossil finding indicates that Gallimimis might have eaten by straining tiny invertebrates such as brine shrimp from water and sediments through the filter structure in its beak. This find is unusual because scientists had not expected to see filter-feeding behavior in such large terrestrial dinosaurs.
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