Image: Archaeopteryx, skull

Archaeopteryx, skull

Archaeopteryx skull, reconstructed cast. F134185. Based on fossils from Germany, Late Jurassic, 155 - 150 million years ago.

Photographer:
Robert Jones
Rights:
© Australian Museum

Notes

Archaeopteryx (a bird and so a theropod dinosaur) had the small jaws and sharp teeth characteristic of living insect-eaters. These are useful for piercing tough exoskeletons of insects but can also be used to catch small lizards, fish and mammals. This is why it is hard to tell the difference between a true insect-eater and a small flesh-eater from fossils.

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Tags archaeopteryx, early birds, fossil, cast, Late Jurassic, teeth, tooth, dentition, jaw, meat-eating, meat eaters, carnivores, carnivorous, Germany,