Turiasaurus

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Turiasaurus
Temporal range: Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous
Turiasaurus.jpg
Restored skeleton
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sauropsida
Superorder: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Sauropodomorpha
Infraorder: Sauropoda
(unranked): Turiasauria
Genus: Turiasaurus
Royo-Torres, Cobos & Alcala, 2006
Species
  • T. riodevensis Royo-Torres et al., 2006 (type)
Restoration.

Turiasaurus (meaning "Turia lizard"; Turia is the Latin name of Teruel) is a genus of sauropod dinosaur from the Jurassic-Cretaceous boundary. The fossils were known informally as "Riodevasaurus", a nomen nudum.[1]

Turiasaurus is believed to be the largest dinosaur ever found in Europe, and is among the largest dinosaurs known, at 36-39 metres in length and with a weight of 40 to 48 tonnes,[2] the combined weight of six or seven adult male elephants. More recent estimates suggest a length closer to 30 m (98 ft) in length, but a comperable mass of 50 tonnes.[3] The length of its skull is 70 centimetres, which is not too large. According to the paleontologist Luis Alcalá, this is because a larger head may have caused Turiasaurus to break its neck.[4]

Fragmentary remains of this animal, including an articulated left forelimb (holotype), skull fragments, teeth, vertebrae and ribs, have been found in terrestrial deposits of the Villar del Arzobispo Formation of Riodeva (Teruel Province, Eastern Spain), and a forelimb from Portugal.[5] The type species, Turiasaurus riodevensis, was formally described by Royo-Torres, Cobos & Alcala, in 2006.[2] Recently, excavations have been made east of Madrid and what has been uncovered so far is the most complete fossil of such creatures in the whole world.[6]

Phylogenetic analysis shows that Turiasaurus lies outside of the Neosauropoda division and belongs to a new clade, Turiasauria, together with Losillasaurus and Galveosaurus.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Tweet, J. N.d. Eusauropoda Retrieved 2012-12-31.
  2. ^ a b c Royo-Torres, R., Cobos, A., and Alcalá, L. (2006). "A Giant European Dinosaur and a New Sauropod Clade." Science 314: 1925-1927.
  3. ^ Paul, G.S., 2010, The Princeton Field Guide to Dinosaurs, Princeton University Press.
  4. ^ "El Turiasaurus". El Mundo. 2012. 
  5. ^ Mateus, O. (2009). The sauropod Turiasaurus riodevensis in the Late Jurassic of Portugal. Journal of vertebrate Paleontology, 29.
  6. ^ "Největší dinosaurus moc nemyslel, zato pořádně jedl". excavations. seznam. Retrieved 21 April 2012. 

External links[edit]