Middleeast

Arabia's Age of Dinosaurs

Published 10:54 PM ET, Sun January 26, 2014
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An international team of scientists has discovered the first evidence of dinosaurs in Saudi Arabia. Dinosaur remnants are exceptionally rare in the Arabian Peninsula (enough "to fit inside a shoe box" according to Benjamin Kear, the study's lead author). Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Kear and his team uncovered 72-million-year-old fossils -- the first was of a series of vertebrae from the tail of a "Brontosaurus-like" group of Sauropod dinosaurs called Titanosaurs. Benjamin Kear
The second fossils were that of a few teeth from a theropod or, more specifically, an Abelisaurid -- a bipedal carnivorous dinosaur some 20 feet long. Benjamin Kear
Kear, who has excavated in the region before, says he was following up a lead by oil geologists who stumbled upon an accumulation of fossils of giant marine reptiles. Benjamin Kear
Much of what is today the Arabian Peninsula was underwater during the age of dinosaurs, and those rare remains that were discovered were washed downstream and out to sea by rivers, probably during a flash flood long ago in the Late Cretaceous period. Benjamin Kear