As a night hunter, Velociraptor would have been able to see well in the dark, allowing it to catch its prey at the dead of night.

Although Velociraptor were extremely fierce predators, they might have been prey for larger animals like their fellow theropod, Tarbosaurus.

Just as portrayed in Jurassic Park, some experts believe Velociraptor were pack hunters, tackling large prey cooperatively. It would have been terrifying being attacked by several ferocious Velociraptor!

One of the closest relatives of Velociraptor is Balaur bondoc. Found in the Late Cretaceous of Romania, Balaur was also a two-legged, turkey-sized carnivore, but it had two sets of sickle-shaped 'killer' claws on each foot instead of one!

It has long been thought that Velociraptor used its famous 6.5cm (2.6in) long claws to slash its victims, but new research suggests it used them like climbing crampons to grip onto the sides of its prey.

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Velociraptor

"Swift Seizer"

DinosauriaTheropodaDromaeosauridae

Velociraptor was a small, feathered, carnivorous dinosaur. Velociraptors and their relatives are among the closest relatives to the birds. They share a number of bird-like features including a foldable wrist and large feathers. It is almost certain that Velociraptor behaved like a bird, especially in how it cared for its young. Velociraptor seach index text.

2

When?

Velociraptor lived during the Late Cretaceous.

Extinct for about: 00,000,000,000 Days00 Hours00 Min00 Sec

How old are you?
00,00,00.00 of your lifetimes have passed since their extinction.
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They Call it Home

Velociraptor fossils have been found within the Djadochta and Barun Goyot Formations of Mongolia. The conditions here, in the hot, dry Gobi Desert, would have been very similar 75 million years ago. Velociraptor shared its habitat with Protoceratops and Pinacosaurus as well as ankylosaurs and numerous species of lizard.

Gobi Desert

Gobi Desert

3

Where?

Location

  • Mongolia (Djadochta and Barun Goyot Formations)
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What We Heard About Their Hearing

Human Ear

Raptors in general are thought to have been able to hear low frequency sounds best.

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What Big Teeth You Have

Dinosaur Tooth

Velociraptor had around 15 widely spaced teeth on each side of its jaw.Velociraptor sliced its prey with serrated teeth.

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Nose Knowledge

Human Nose

Velociraptor had an excellent sense of smell, just like T. rex. Both would have had a nose to rival a bloodhound.

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The Poop Scoop

Dinosaur Poop

Velociraptor coprolite is yet to be positively identified. However, a coprolite was found inside a dromaeosaur skeleton in Mongolia in 1991. The fossilised poo was small, round and packed with bits of bone.

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The Most Fantastic Find

The best ever fossil find has got to be the 'Fighting Dinosaur'. This beautifully preserved fossil was uncovered in 1971 in the Mongolian Gobi Desert and shows Velociraptor in a death grip with a Protoceratops. It is the most direct evidence of predation ever seen in the fossil record.

From The Expert

The first fossils of Velociraptor, along with dinosaur eggs and amazing examples of Protoceratops and Oviraptor, were found in the 1920s by Roy Chapman Andrews' famous American Museum of Natural History expeditions to the Gobi Desert. More Velociraptor fossils were found during a joint Polish-Mongolian expedition in the 1970s

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Sizing it Up

HeightLengthWeight

Compare to:

0.8m / 2.46ft


Velociraptor's portrayal as a large predator in Jurassic Park was inaccurate...

1 human
1 human
0.8 m / 2.46 ft

0.43

Number of people head-to-toe to reach the top of Velociraptor. (average human height 1.76 m / 5.7 ft)

Compare to:

1.8m / 5.9ft


... in fact, it was not much larger than a modern day domestic turkey.

1 human
1 human
1.8 m / 5.9 ft

1.06

Number of people side by side touching finger tips to match this length (average arm span 1.7 m / 5.58 ft ).

Compare to:

18.14kg / 40.0lbs


Velociraptor weighed less than half the mass of Troodon, which weighed about 50 kg (110 lb).

velociraptor weight
car
x0.26

Number of people weighing 70.31 kg / 155 lbs needed to match the weight of Velociraptor.

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Dino On The Go!

Velociraptor's bones were hollow and lightweight and it had a stiffened tail to help with manoeuvrability. It may have even been able to jump!

39kph / 24.23mph

  • Horse 52 kph / 32.3 mph
  • Velociraptor39 kph / 24.23 mph
  • Cheetah 120.7 kph / 75 mph

22.5kph / 14mph

The average human sprint speed.

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Family Album

Family Album

Velociraptor is a member of the theropod group which includes meat-eating dinosaurs like T. rex.Velociraptor are more specifically part of the dromaeosaur subgroup, along with Deinonychusand Microraptor. A number of dromaeosaurs had feathers, including Velociraptor. The dromaeosaurs and another group of theropods, the troodontids, are the closest relatives of birds.

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Vision

Velociraptor Vision

Velociraptor had excellent binocular vision and its eyesight was among the best of all dinosaurs. In fact, its eyesight was so advanced that it was close to that of our modern day birds.

Velociraptor Vision.

Human Vision

The human field of view is roughly 180 degrees.

Human Field of View
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The Skinny On Their Skin

Velociraptor

Although Velociraptor had feathers, it probably would have been unable to fly due to its small forearms. Instead, its feathers might have been used for display, temperature control, manoeuvrability or in shielding their nests.

15

What's In The Nest?

Velociraptor Egg

Velociraptor would have laid bird-like, ornithoid eggs - about the size of an emu egg and not unlike all other theropod eggs.

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Headlines

velociraptor brain size

Velociraptor is one of the most intelligent dinosaurs known. The dromaeosaurs were in general highly intelligent.

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Quite The Bite

Velociraptor's bite was probably around 3000 N, much lower than T. rex's at 57000 N but on a par with a lion, which has a bite force of between 3000 and 4500 N.

Velociraptor Bite
  • Alligator
  • Lion
  • Leopard
  • Velociraptor

    Bite Force (N)
    x1000

    720N

    Average force of human bite, measured at molars.

    18

    Good Eatin'

    Plant Icon

    Velociraptor were thought to have chased down their prey, leaping on top and gripping them with their sickle claws. They may have even fed on their prey whilst it was still alive... gruesome!Velociraptor would have eaten a modest amount, probably about as much as a chicken each day.

    19

    Parental Guidance

    Velociraptor Parent and Child

    Velociraptor are thought to have been doting parents. It is likely they nested on their eggs, covering them with their feathered arms in an effort to incubate and care for their offspring.

    20

    True Colours

    Color Wheel

    There is a possibility that Velociraptor would have been colourful. We now know that it possessed feathers which might have functioned as a signal to its mates or competitors.