Concavenator is a genus of theropod dinosaur that lived approximately 130 million years ago during the early Cretaceous period (Barremian stage). The type species is C. corcovatus; Concavenator corcovatus means “hump backed hunter from Cuenca”. The fossil was discovered in the Las Hoyas fossil site of Spain by paleontologists José Luis Sanz, Francisco Ortega and Fernando Escaso from the Autonomous University of Madrid and the National University of Distance Learning.
Concavenator was a medium-sized (roughly 6 meters (20 feet) long) primitive carcharodontosaurian dinosaur possessing several unique features. Two extremely tall vertebrae in front of the hips formed a tall but narrow and pointed crest (possibly supporting a hump) on the dinosaur’s back. The function of such crests is currently unknown. Paleontologist Roger Benson from Cambridge University speculated that one possibility is that “it is analogous to head-crests used in visual displays”, but the Spanish scientists who discovered it noted it could also be a thermal regulator.
Its name literally means “the hunchback hunter from Cuenca,” describing both the location where it was found in central Spain and one of its most unique features. Again, from Nature: Its eleventh and twelfth vertebrae jut about twice as far from the animal’s body as the rest. Unlike dinosaurs such as Spinosaurus, which had continuous fins or sails on their backs, Corcovenator seems to have had more of a short crest.
Structures for what appear to be quill knobs have been found on the ulna of the fore arms. If this interpretation is accurate, then Concavenator may have displayed sparse protofeathers from its lower arms. Unfortunately no feathers have been found preserved with the specimen so clarification may have to wait until further specimens can be found.