Variraptor, meaning ” Var river thief,” is a genus of theropod dinosaur from the Campania-Maastrichtian ages of the Late Cretaceous Period (65-80 million years ago). It was named after the Var River in the Alpes-Maritimes Department in the Provence region of southern France. It was discovered in the GrÃ¨s Ã Reptiles Formation at La Bastide Neuve, near Fox-Amphoux, France.
Variraptor was described in 1998 by Le Leouff and Buffetaut. The remains were originally assigned to the theropod genus Elopteryx. It is known from a posterior dorsal vertebra, a sacrum with five fused vertebrae, a femur and right humerus with a delto-pectoral crest that is more developed than any other theropod known.
The remains have dromaeosaurid features in the shape of the vertebrae and the humerus. It also has some resemblance to Deinonychus, although, the adult Variraptor may have been slightly smaller than Deinonychus at around 6.5 feet long.