Dinosaurs Alive!

Effigia

ImageName means: Ghost
Height: 3 ft (.91 m)
Length: 9 to 11 ft (2.74 to 3.35 m)
Weight: 150 to 200 lbs (68 to 90 kg)

Effigia is a crocodylian relative that lived during the Late Triassic (230-200 mya) in North America. Complete skeletons of Effigia were excavated among the fossil skeletons of the early carnivorous dinosaur Coelophysis in New Mexico in the 1940s, but were not taken out of the entombing rock until 2004. Relatives of Effigia were abundant in the Triassic of North America and close relatives have also been found in South America, Africa, and China.

Effigia was 12-15 feet long and it is unclear whether it was a carnivore, herbivore, or omnivore because Effigia had a beak much like that of a bird or turtle. Modern animals with beaks can eat about anything. Effigia and close relatives were unique among the crocodylian relatives in that they were bipedal and had tiny hands. Additionally, Effigia had large eyes, a long neck, and a long tail. Many characteristics of Effigia resemble those found in ornithomimid dinosaurs from the Cretaceous, nearly 80 million years later. These similarities are an example of extreme convergence, two animals that don’t share a close relative that evolve to look like one another.

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