Formerly known as Laelaps, Dryptosaurus aquilungis is one of the first dinosaurs discovered in North America, his remains having been found in 1866 in New Jersey. It has been immortalized in a 1897 painting by Charles R. Knight showing a surprisingly modern view of two fighting Dryptosaurus. It is however known by rather scrappy remains that made it difficult to classify. Its inclusion among the basal tyrannosauroids has only been established recently (2005). Dryptosaurus lived during the Maastrichtian stage of the Late Cretaceous of Eastern North America and measured probably about 6 meters long. It is characterized by unusually large hand claws.
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