Originally raptors were daylight birds of prey: hawks, eagles, harriers, falcons, and so on. Paleontologists borrowed the term as a suffix for a set of dinosaurs: Velociraptors, Utahraptors, Pyroraptors… One Jurassic Park phenomenon later, and the dinosaurs have totally stolen the term “raptor” from the birds. Is that any way to treat your evolutionary descendants?
In other paleontological news, I checked in on “Giant prehistoric krakens may have sculpted self-portraits using ichthyosaur bones” at io9.com. A geologist suggested that an unusual formation of ichthyosaur fossils was created by a Triassic giant squid arranging them so their vertebrae formed a picture of itself on the ocean floor. Because giant squid used to be that vain.
Good comments sections are all too rare in today’s internet, but I appreciated artiofab’s remark on that story:
I think I speak for the entire paleontological community when I say: This is not what most of us do with our time, honestly.