Posted at 11:20 AM ET, 06/14/2011

Smallest dinosaur discovered — after two years of sitting in a fossil hunter’s drawer

This is a battery-operated triceratops, not the world’s tiniest dinosaur. (By Yoshikazu Tsun/AFP/Getty Images)
Forget the looming Zhuchengtyrannus magnus, the cousin of T-Rex discovered in March. This month is all about tiny dinosaurs.

The “Ashdown maniraptoran” was discovered in the United Kingdom and measured about a foot long. It may be the world’s smallest dinosaur. Only a portion of the vertebrae was unearthed, though, so researchers cannot determine its diet, Discovery reports.

However, it may be tough to find that head. The body was unearthed two years ago, reportedly, by an amateur fossil hunter who stumbled over it in a brickworks near his home. Dave Brockhurst kept the bone in his bedside table for two years before contacting experts. He told the Daily Mail, “I knew there was something about it that was different but I had no idea what it would turn out to be.”

By  |  11:20 AM ET, 06/14/2011

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