New Clawed, Carnivorous Dinosaur Unearthed In Australia

The ultimate irony behind dinosaurs is that even if they’ve been extinct for millions of years, they’ll likely be on the forefront of people’s minds for ages to come. Movies are partly to blame for that, but even from beyond the grave dinosaurs are making the headlines. They don’t have to do a thing — except have their remains discovered, of course.

Australian opal miners found enough fossils to reconstruct and identify a new type of dinosaur. The group behind the discovery decided to call it the Lightning Claw, both because of the ridge that contained it and its most distinct feature: the massive claws it likely used to capture helpless prey. Though it looks like it didn’t have the sheer jaw strength of the infamous T-Rex, it’s still considered the largest carnivore Australia has seen to date.

It’s an exciting discovery, but it doesn’t stop with size or claws. Australia isn’t commonly thought of as an origin point for a lot of dinosaur breeds, but the Lightning Claw is an exception. It’s thought to have originated from the land down under, and then branched out to other areas while the planet had a single massive continent. It could mean that other dinosaurs are hidden in Australia as well — but until they’re found, at least there’s one more ancient lizard to add to the list.

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