Velociraptors were small, 30-pound, predatory dinosaurs that lived during the end of the Cretaceous Period, 85.8 million to 70.6million years ago. Fossil evidence leads scientists to believe Velociraptors, birdlike dinosaurs about the size of turkeys, had feathers, but they were too heavy to fly. Velociraptors ate both living and dead prey, such as smaller dinosaurs, reptiles, insects and mammals.
Archaeologists have found two species of Velociraptor: Velociraptor mongoliensis and Velociraptor osmolskae. V. osmolsi, the latter of which they discovered in 2008. Quill knobs on the forelegs of Velociraptors indicate that the dinosaur had feathers, but at 6 feet long and weighing 30 pounds with very short forelegs, it was too heavy to fly.
The Velociraptor only had about 30 widely-spaced, serrated teeth in its 9-inch long skull. Its long, thin snout made up 60 percent of the length of its skull. It had an inflexible tail that most likely helped balance the animal.
The Velociraptor was both a hunter and a scavenger, preying on reptiles, fish and mammals and also cleaning up the remains of dead animals. While it probably ate mostly smaller prey, scientists found a large Pterosaur bone in the stomach of one Velociraptor. Pterosaurs were large winged dinosaurs with wingspans of 6.5 feet.