The “Dinosauroid" was a thought experiment proposed by Canadian paleontologist Dale Russell in 1982. In it, he outlined what might happen if Troodon / Stenonychosaurus, the dinosaur with the largest brain capacity, evolved sentience. Russell thought Troodon would achieve an anthropomorphic, tailless form, reproduce in the mammalian fashion, but feed its young on regurgitated food.

A sculpture of this creature, and its Troodon equivalent, used to be on display at the Royal Ontario Museum, but both have since been put into storage.

The Dinosauroid seems to be mostly forgotten, except for conspiracy theories about “Reptoids", and when it’s brought up by scientists, the idea is often criticized for being too humanlike. I agree with most of the criticisms, and I look at the dinosauroid as a piece of science fiction rather than realistic speculation. In that way, I’d say it’s unimaginative.

Troodons are awesome, though.

Russell, D. A. and Sequin, R. “Reconstruction of the small Cretaceous theropod Stenonychosaurus inequalis and a hypothetical dinosauroid,“ Syllogeous, 37, 1 (1982).

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