Yorkshire's largest ever dinosaur footprint left by giant carnivore resting in Filey

The footprint was found by an archaeologist out searching for shellfish. Credit: Marie Woods

The largest ever dinosaur footprint in Yorkshire belonged to a giant carnivore stopping for a rest 166 million years ago.

Scientists said the metre-long fossil discovered in Burniston Bay, near Scarborough, was likely from a Megolosaurus.

The footprint, which is the largest ever found in Yorkshire, was discovered in 2021.

Since, researchers have uncovered that "the unusual footprint appears to capture the moment that the dinosaur rested or crouched down some 166 million years ago".

The footprint was made by a theropod similar to a Megalosaurus. Credit: University of Manchester

The fossil is now set to go on display at Scarborough's Rotunda Museum.

Archaeologist Marie Woods, who is a co-author of the study, found the giant footprint while she was out collecting shellfish.

She said: "I couldn’t believe what I was looking at, I had to do a double take.

"I have seen a few smaller prints when out with friends, but nothing like this."

Dr Dean Lomax, a palaeontologist at the University of Manchester, said that the footprint belonged to "a real Jurassic giant" and that it had revealed new information about the behaviour of dinosaurs.

He added: "Features of the footprint may even suggest that this large predator was squatting down before standing up.

"It’s fun to think this dinosaur might well have been strolling along a muddy coastal plain one lazy Sunday afternoon in the Jurassic."

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