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Anatomically Strange Dinosaur Vacuumed Up Food

CowboyNeal posted more than 6 years ago | from the things-that-suck dept.

Biotech 131

TaeKwonDood writes "A paleontologist has discovered a 110 million-year-old dinosaur that had a mouth that worked like a vacuum cleaner, hundreds of tiny teeth and nearly translucent skull." The creature's vertebrae also consisted of more air than bone, and CT scans of the head suggest it continually held its head low for food vacuuming. Low-hanging fruit, indeed.

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I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (3, Funny)

MLease (652529) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376501)

So this is a dinosaur that really sucked?

-Mike

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (2, Funny)

eebra82 (907996) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376593)

Yes. It's ancestors have found their way to the Congress/White House.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (3, Funny)

infinity314159 (1109701) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376735)

I think you mean descendants...

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (4, Funny)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377001)

No, these dinosaurs are more evolved, so I think we should say ancestors.

Not sure about that (1)

Fross (83754) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377133)

Have you seen Strom Thurmond? Or some of his decisions as senator?

(Not recently, thank god)

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

sqldr (838964) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377165)

No, he was right with ancestors. I mean, look how old Dick Cheney is..

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377779)

I think you mean descendants...

Possibly, remember this species had hollow bones and weak spine. Perhaps perhaps evolved to birds with small brains?

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (3, Funny)

russ1337 (938915) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377175)

Yes. It's ancestors have found their way to the Congress/White House.
Congress?

and I thought the dinosaur's Latin name was RIAAsaurus. Bottom feeders with air in their skulls indeed.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377203)

I think you mean "Its".

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377805)

Maybe you can get one of these dinosaurs to suck the apostrophe out of the useless "it's" you put in your sentence.


Here's a hint: it's == it is. Learn it. Use it. Live it.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (2, Funny)

FredDC (1048502) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376599)

Vacuum Dinosaur?

I thought Hollywood script writers were on strike?

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

RuBLed (995686) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376637)

Aha! That's the missing link, now my theory have support. Not all humans living today are of the same species... clever dinosaur genes, trying to mimic homo sapiens...

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (5, Funny)

halvin (883516) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376689)

I hear they're going to call it a Dysonosaur.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

therufus (677843) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376897)

I was going to say Hooversaurus, but yours is better.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (5, Funny)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376963)

I was going to say Hooversaurus

The Hooversaurus was contemporary, but became extinct when it's bag filled up.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (2, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377273)

You know how hard it can be getting spares for things that are even ten years old. Now just imagine how it is for something 600 times as old.

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

aproposofwhat (1019098) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377415)

Damn - no mod points today, but that's the funniest ID post I've seen in ages.

Kudos, man - kudos!

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377925)

Can't you just use the same spares that you throw at cave bears, sabre-toothed tigers and trilobites?

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (4, Funny)

Slashidiot (1179447) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377031)

Well, my sources indicate that Roombasaurus is being also considered...

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

KudyardRipling (1063612) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377417)

There will be a whole lot of laughing as we watch reruns of the Flintstones where the vacuum dinosaur is employed
by either Wilma or Betty.

How about (I'm going to get into trouble with the DEC fans here, but this is a UK thing) Nothing sucks like a VAXOSAURUS!

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (2, Funny)

chord.wav (599850) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378501)

Or Lewinskysaur...

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0, Redundant)

AliasTheRoot (171859) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376867)

It was a Dysonsaur (TM)

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21376909)

AKA The Crumbsuckers http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crumbsuckers [wikipedia.org]

Obligatory ,,, (1)

ozbird (127571) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376877)

... Wikipedia link [wikipedia.org] .

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377081)

This image is highly suspect... or is it just my dirty mind that reads too much into it?

http://www.forumpix.co.uk/uploads/1195208745.jpg [forumpix.co.uk]

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377227)

This image is highly suspect... or is it just my dirty mind that reads too much into it?
It's just you; we all know that you copied it straight into your personal pr0n folder :-P

Re:I'm sorry, I can't resist.... (1)

Mode_Locrian (1130249) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377409)

Yeah, did you see the pic in TFA? Note placement of dinosaur head relative to the person standing next to it...

Photo of dino (5, Funny)

phillips321 (955784) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376511)

Here's the image of the bones
http://www.forumpix.co.uk/uploads/1195208745.jpg [forumpix.co.uk]

Re:Photo of dino (4, Interesting)

oliderid (710055) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376525)

To see a drawing of this beast (Nigersaurus taqueti)
http://dino.lm.com/images/display.php?id=1065 [lm.com]

Re:Photo of dino (1)

Notegg Nornoggin (1175269) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377235)

Hey, that's rascist. Naming it after black folks just because it sucks.

Re:Photo of dino (1)

Robert Heinich (857844) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378127)

That is a bit of a stretch.. From one of the links of the article, http://www.projectexploration.org/nigersaurus/meet.htm [projectexploration.org] , "This bizarre-looking, long-necked plant-eating dinosaur is named Nigersaurus taqueti in honor of the country in which it was found (Niger) and a French paleontologist, Dr. Philippe Taquet, who led the first fossil expeditions to Niger in the 1960s."

Re:Photo of dino (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377637)

Nigersaurus Please

Re:Photo of dino (1)

taricha (1115245) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379525)

That pic is missing a big bold-fonted "PWNED" caption

excited? (1)

rasputin465 (1032646) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376679)

That researcher seems to be holding the head of the 'vacuum cleaner' fairly close to his...

Re:excited? (1)

TheSwampDweller (1076321) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377097)

He must not realize that it can't suck on things anymore.

Re:excited? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377489)

He's explaining to the photographer what it feels like to 'bone' Paris Hilton / Nicole Richie / other waif du jour.

Re:Photo of dino (-1, Offtopic)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376845)

It may be anatomically strange, but anatomically perfect for giving blowjobs.

Re:Photo of dino (1)

Gauthic (964948) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378607)

Now, that's an interesting place one's pelvis while shooting a photo for a 'Dino that sucks'.

Re:Photo of dino (1)

AaxelB (1034884) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379973)

After some searching, I actually found a series of images documenting the discovery of the dinosaur:
1 [uclick.com]
2 [uclick.com]
3 [uclick.com]
4 [uclick.com]
5 [uclick.com]
And, of course, Profit!!! [uclick.com]

Kinda like.. (-1, Troll)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376553)

the way Dick Cheney sucks up money.  And shits out American soldier's blood!

Complete Scientific Article (5, Informative)

Selanit (192811) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376557)

Thanks to the Public Library of Science, their complete publication is available to us under the enthralling title Structural Extremes in a Late Cretaceous Dinosaur [plosone.org] . I found Figure 1 [plosone.org] especially interesting for its 3D visualizations of the skull structure. The thing's mouth really does resemble the shape of a vacuum cleaner, particularly one of those older models where the brush is on the end of a tube and all the machinery is in a little tug-along chassis. I'm inclined to think that it probably bit off the plants it was eating rather than "sucking" them up, though.

Still, neat stuff, and yet more proof that there are a whole bunch of Really Weird Things(TM) out there.

Re:Complete Scientific Article (1)

RealGrouchy (943109) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379249)

I'm inclined to think that it probably bit off the plants it was eating rather than "sucking" them up, though.
Then would you care to explain how Wilma Flintstone vacuumed her carpets?

- RG>

like a fish? (2, Interesting)

goatherder23 (1189859) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376559)

I've seen fish like Carp act like vacuum cleaners - maybe this dino grazed in water?

Re:like a fish? (1)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376605)

I thought that as well, especialy when the lightweight skeleton is taken into consideration (less strength needed when the bulk is water bourne) but if you read this article linked from TFA [plosone.org] it makes it quite clear that the current thinking is that it was a land animal. In addition a downward facing mouth doesn't do too well for a swamp dweller - how's it going to breath?

Re:like a fish? (1)

phillips321 (955784) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376653)

Hows it going to breathe? --> Probably by using that long ass neck to stick it's head above water Possibly alot like these guys:
http://www.forumpix.co.uk/uploads/1195210095.jpg [forumpix.co.uk]

Re:like a fish? (1)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376749)

I suppose that it could raise it's head above water to breath in the same way that a whale comes to the surface to breath but the skeleton indicates that the head was habitually pointing downwards. All paleontology is a matter of guesswork but an air breather who's head is habitually pointing downwards is probably land based - don't take my word for it - RTFA.

Re:like a fish? (1)

LarsWestergren (9033) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376919)

All paleontology is a matter of guesswork but an air breather who's head is habitually pointing downwards is probably land based

That presumes it breathed through its head, couldn't it have had air intakes conveniently placed on its back? :)

Re:like a fish? (1)

phillips321 (955784) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376931)

quote: probably :D

Re:like a fish? (1)

asdfgl (891883) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378621)

how's it going to breath?

Well carps seems to have no problem breathing...

Re:like a fish? (1)

BytePusher (209961) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378811)

My guess about the lightweight skeleton is that perhaps it was mostly cartilage. Another article states that it was a very fast growing animal. Perhaps due to the speed of growth it needed a very flexible skeleton to accommodate uneven growth. My guess is that they will eventually find an older one with more substantial bones.

Perhaps this one's bone structure is not standard as well. Raditaion poisoning from near surface uranium? Malnutrition? Some kind of acid maybe thinned the bones? Osteoporosis(Maybe it's an old one)?

Re:like a fish? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377051)

I wouldn't say its mouth is that unusual. Apparently they've never heard of the modern mammalian equivalent [google.com] which would occupy a similar environmental niche and lifestyle.

Loss of suction? (5, Funny)

Panitz (1102427) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376585)

Did it lose suction when it got full? Or does it have dual cyclone technology?

Re:Loss of suction? (3, Funny)

Mister Transistor (259842) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376863)

Possible species names:

Dysonasaurus

Tyrannolectrolux

Eurekaceratops

Rainbodocus

Hooverdon

Re:Loss of suction? (5, Funny)

ceeam (39911) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376929)

Vistasaurus.

Re:Loss of suction? (3, Funny)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377519)

Meh. Wake me up when the pterashopvactyl is discovered.

Re:Loss of suction? (1)

josquint (193951) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378859)

SuckZilla

Re:Loss of suction? (1)

houghi (78078) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376985)

... and what would that do to patents considering there is previous art?

Niggersaurus? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21376687)

I couldn't make this stuff up.. omg

Re:Niggersaurus? (0, Offtopic)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376757)

You're a bit late with that troll. In fact, that troll was at least almost 12 hours ahead of /.'s editors. Proof [slashdot.org] . It's a sad day when copypasta trolls are faster than /.'s editors with the latest dinosaur news.

Re:Niggersaurus? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21376799)

It is hilarious that an African country, of all the countries in the world, would be named Niger. What dumbasses.

Re:Niggersaurus? (0, Offtopic)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376859)

That comment implies you don't know the history of the word "niger". Or maybe it's supposed to be teh FUNNAY!

implications (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21376723)

dontsuckmebro

Natural Selection at work... (1)

laejoh (648921) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376741)

The creature's vertebrae also consisted of more air than bone.

So these creatures 'evolved' into PHBs?'

Seriously (4, Funny)

ThirdPrize (938147) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376743)

had a mouth that worked like a vacuum cleaner
I knew a girl like that once ...

Re:Seriously (2, Funny)

nick79au (791048) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377065)

I knew a girl
pfftt.. this is /.

"Anatomically strange"? (1)

tygerstripes (832644) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376807)

My kids vacuum up food all the time. And if they don't have hollow bones, I dunno where it goes.

o_O (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21376841)

http://i.usatoday.net/tech/_photos/2007/11/15/dino472.jpg [usatoday.net]

Just because he sucked food doesnt mean u have to take a picture with the dinos head there....

Odd vaccum (2, Funny)

belg4mit (152620) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376853)

/me checks the hall closet, my vacuum doesn't seem to have teeth and a transluscent head...

I once dated... (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376941)

I once date a girl that had a mouth that worked like a vacuum cleaner and nearly translucent skull. Thank God she did not have the aforementioned hundreds of tiny teeth...

Re:I once dated... (1, Troll)

Lariat (809245) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377075)

You post on slashdot and you once dated a girl? Riiiiiiight. . .

Re:I once dated... (4, Funny)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377259)

Paying $50 in a back alley is not considered dating where you're from?

Re:I once dated... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377329)

Paying $50 in a back alley is not considered dating where you're from?
On slashdot that's a long term relationship. You know she's probably in his will.

Fuuny the Catcha is payments.

Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (5, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376969)

Its head is shaped like a vacuum cleaners nozzle, but the article also states that it grazed like a cow. Cows don't vacuum (more the other way around) and nowhere in the article is there any suggestion that it vacuums except in sentences that seem to be written by a journalist, not a scientist.

If the animal did hover up its food it would need some way to create a large enough vacuum. Some fish do it, by suddenly expanding their mouth so that water, and hopefully ffood is sucked in to the "new" space. But that is a lot easier then to do the same thing with air. Just check the amount of power needed to vacuum up even an ant.

Unless the animal has some radicial new systems the only way for it to create a vacuum would be to expand its body to take in air. Doable,and if you are a large animal the amount of suction would be impressive but, well why?

If it grazed it meant it ate plants, you can't vacuum up plants because they are attached to their roots. Once you cut of the grass with your mouth, you no longer need to suck it up.

About the only thing I could see it being used for is to suck up small animals, like say sucking up ants. Still, I think that animal would also be sucking up a lot of dirt.

Frankly I think this is just bad journalism, the scientist said its mouth looks like a vacuum cleaner nozzle and the journalist turned that into the critter vacuums up its food.

Anyone found ANY link suggesting otherwise?

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377375)

National Geographic is referring to it as a "fern mower".

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377725)

Sentences such as "Perhaps it was one of those eureka moments, when the scientists realized they had discovered a new dinosaur with mouth parts designed to vacuum up food" bolster the claim of bad journalism still further. In fact many articles are rife with the term "design" in regard to anatomy instead using a more accurate "adapted to."

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21378691)

"Eureka moments"? - that's hoovering on the edge of a bad pun.

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (1)

SubliminalLove (646840) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379489)

Cows don't vacuum (more the other way around)

No, my vacuum doesn't cow either.

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (1)

Chysn (898420) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379541)

> > Cows don't vacuum (more the other way around)

> No, my vacuum doesn't cow either.

My vacuum cows. Sometimes I wish it'd just grow a pair and suck it up already.

Re:Sucky (get it, suck) journalism? (1)

ideonode (163753) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379989)

Cows don't vacuum (more the other way around)

You know, I've spent the last ten minutes trying to understand that clause. I don't get it. Help...

Cartoon (1)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 6 years ago | (#21376975)

Where is Gary Larson when you need him?

(Picture of janitor scratching head in front of skeleton)

"Scruffy never did figure where he left that darned thing."

Just right for a modern stone age family (3, Funny)

dgun (1056422) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377013)

An upgrade from the woolly mammoth model?

It does look like (0, Offtopic)

holywarrior21c (933929) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377093)

Dinosaur is giving a nice blow job to the dr researcher
just kid...couldn't resist...

JarJarsaurus (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377105)

I work at National Geographic, so I've been watching them set up the exhibit for this thing for the past few days. One of the first things that went up was a display with a model of the head. All that myself and a few other people can think of when we see this is "Hullo. Meesa JarJarsaurus." [projectexploration.org]

Saurs (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377193)

Dinosaurs didnt exists. God put the fossils there.

Not strange, but... (4, Funny)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377297)

If this dinosaur were female, it would not be called (as per the title) "anatomically strange". It would be called "anatomically correct".

Flintstonian archeology (4, Funny)

sadangel (702907) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377567)

They've finally discovered Wilma's vacuum cleaner.

/.-ed (1)

protobion (870000) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377655)

It seems like PloS One.org has been /.-ed.

We know that from... (0, Redundant)

master_p (608214) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377775)

...the Flintstones!!!!

Filter-feeder? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21377825)

Like a flamingo?

Sucking up food? (1)

jonr (1130) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377837)

Sounds like my ex...

Better Title... (2, Funny)

bigkahunafish (708759) | more than 6 years ago | (#21377971)

"Newly discovered dinosaur sucks."

Darwin in action (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 6 years ago | (#21378939)

Birds are now generally thought to be descendants of dinosaurs. Perhaps we should try to establish a link between this creature and a current species. My vote goes to politicians. They've merely adapted to suck money out of your wallet and poop it out to their paymasters. I won't speculate what lobbyists, special interest groups and multi-national corporations are descended from. It would be too depressing.

Anatomically Strange Dinosaur Vacuumed Up Food (1)

TriZz (941893) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379177)

Anatomically Strange Dinosaur Vacuumed Up Food I was just reminiscing about a girl that I once dated. Replace "dinosaur" with "girl" and you've hit the nail on the head.

A dinosaur that can suck like that!? (2, Funny)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379301)

Must be called YoMommasaurus.

See it in action (1)

volpe (58112) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379303)

Here. [tripod.com]

Toddler-Sized Teeth (4, Funny)

Chysn (898420) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379347)

My wife turned on Good Morning America while I was still groggy from sleep. While I lay there listening to the TV, they ran this story, saying that the dinosaur had "over 500 toddler-sized teeth." I thought, "A toddler is a strange thing to compare the size of a tooth to, but my god, that thing's HUGE!"

He's not extinct... (1)

butterwise (862336) | more than 6 years ago | (#21379869)

He's my brother in law...
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