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Temporal range: Norian
~227–213 Ma
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Sauropodomorpha
Family: Massospondylidae
Genus: Coloradisaurus
Lambert 1983

Coloradisaurus (meaning "Colorados [from Los Colorados Formation] lizard") is a genus of massospondylid sauropodomorph dinosaur. It lived during the Late Triassic period (Norian to Rhaetian stages) in what is now La Rioja Province, Argentina. It is known from the holotype PVL 5904, nearly complete skull. It was discovered and collected from the upper section of the Los Colorados Formation of the Ischigualasto-Villa Unión Basin.


Originally named Coloradia by Jose F. Bonaparte in 1978,[1] this name had already been assigned to a moth, and so the animal was renamed. The genus was first named by David Lambert in 1983 and the type species is Coloradisaurus brevis.[2] It may in fact be an adult specimen of Mussaurus. Cladistic analyses by Yates (2007), Yates et al. (2010, 2011) and Novas et al. (2011) found that Coloradisaurus is basal to the Glacialisaurus-Lufengosaurus clade within Massospondylidae.[3][4]


  1. ^ Jose F. Bonaparte (1978). "Coloradia brevis n. g. et n. sp. (Saurischia–Prosauropoda), dinosaurio Plateosauridae de la Formacion Los Colorados, Triasico Superior de La Rioja, Argentina". Ameghiniana. 15 (3–4): 327–332.
  2. ^ David Lambert (1983). "A Field Guide to Dinosaurs". Avon Books, New York: 1–256. ISBN 978-0-380-83519-5.
  3. ^ Yates, Adam M. (2007). "The first complete skull of the Triassic dinosaur Melanorosaurus Haughton (Sauropodomorpha: Anchisauria)". In Barrett, Paul M.; Batten, David J. (eds.). Special Papers in Palaeontology. 77. London: The Palaeontological Assoc. pp. 9–55. ISBN 978-1-4051-6933-2.
  4. ^ Fernando E. Novas; Martin D. Ezcurra; Sankar Chatterjee; T. S. Kutty (2011). "New dinosaur species from the Upper Triassic Upper Maleri and Lower Dharmaram formations of central India". Earth and Environmental Science Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. 101 (3–4): 333–349. doi:10.1017/S1755691011020093.

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