Conchoraptor is an extinct genus of oviraptorosaur theropod dinosaur from Late Cretaceous Mongolia, living around 70 mya in the Early Maastrichtian age.

Conchoraptor web

Description and Discovery[]

At 1.85 m (6 ft) long and 32 kg (70 lbs)[1], Conchoraptor was a smaller animal than its relative Oviraptor. The head of Oviraptor was decorated with bony crests, but Conchoraptor had no decoration. At first, it was thought that Conchoraptor was a juvenile Oviraptor and that the cranial crest developed at the beginning of maturity. Further study of more skeletons—especially the hands—showed that Conchoraptor was a different genus. Its hands seem to be a transitional form, or "missing link," between Oviraptor and the oviraptorid-like small theropod Ingenia. Conchoraptor was found in the Nemegt Formation of Bugeen-Tsav and Kherneen-Tsav, in Mongolia.

The current most close relative to Conchoraptor is the genus Khaan.

Classification and Naming[]

For many years, only one oviraptorid, Oviraptor philoceratops, was known. Paleontologists classigied it as an ornithomimid because its skull was toothless. More oviraptorid specimens were discovered in the 1970s. These have been examined and descriptions were published of two new animals: O. mongliensis and C. gracilis. The name of the latter species means "slender conch-stealer."


  1. Dinosaur Facts and Figures: The Theropods