One look at the Deinonychus, and you can see why its name means “terrible claw.” This dinosaur has large, curved claws on its hind feet, similar to other raptors. Discovered in Billings, Montana in 1931, Deinonychus lived in the United States during the Cretaceous Period roughly 115 million years ago.
Deinonychus fossils have been discovered in Utah, Wyoming, Montana, and Oklahoma. In the 1960s, paleontologists remarked that Deinonychus seemed to be closely related to modern birds. Deinonychus was covered in feathers and had wing-like arms. They walked on two legs and used their hind claws to kill and dismantle their prey. Fun Fact: The popular velociraptors from the movie Jurassic Park were inspired by the Deinonychus.