Extra-Badass Dinosaur Named for Dinotopia’s James Gurney!

Paleontologists have named a dinosaur after James Gurney, the creator of Dinotopia! That’s so cool! He’ll be able to walk into a museum and point at a skeleton and be all, “You see that dinosaur? That is my dinosaur.” Granted, he could already point at copies of Dinotopia and say that, but this is even better!

The newly-named dinosaur, Torvosaurus gurneyi, was the largest predator in Jurrasic Europe. It had a skull that measured 115 centimeters, blade-shaped teeth that could be up to ten centimeters long, and it hunted other dinosaurs. Which pretty categorically disqualifies it from citizenship in Dinotopia, but still, this is pretty badass.

The lead researcher, Christophe Hendrickx, who was inspired by Gurney’s Hugo-and-Chesley-winning books when he was a child, said that he “wanted to honor this artist,” while Gurney, who never expected to have a dinosaur named for him, “was completely thrilled and honored and completely surprised.” He also said that he planned to honor Hendrickx in return: “Next time I return to doing paintings of Dinotopia, I look forward to visualizing Torvosaurus—perhaps with Mr. Hendrickx riding it.”

You can read the paper about Torvosaurus gurneyi here, and check out James Gurney’s blog here!

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