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Temporal range: Late Cretaceous, 93 Ma
Illustration of the holotype pelvis
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Theropoda
Superfamily: Therizinosauroidea
Genus: Enigmosaurus
Barsbold & Perle, 1983
E. mongoliensis
Binomial name
Enigmosaurus mongoliensis
Barsbold & Perle, 1983

Enigmosaurus (meaning "Riddle Lizard") is a genus of therizinosauroid theropod dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Mongolia, central Asia. It is a herbivorous bipedal dinosaur.


The holotype, IGM 100/84, was collected in the Bayan Shireh Formation (=Baynshirenskaya) in Khara Khutul, southeastern Mongolia, dating from the Cenomanian and the Turonian stages, around 98-89.8 million years ago. It was first reported in 1979.[1] It consists of a partial skeleton, lacking the skull, which includes a nearly complete pelvis with part of the right ischium missing.[2]

The type species, Enigmosaurus mongoliensis, was named in 1983, by Rinchen Barsbold and Altangerel Perle. The generic name was stated to be derived from Greek αἴνιγμα, ainigma, "riddle", after the puzzling and unusual shape of its pelvis (hips); at the time little was known about therizinosauroids. The specific name refers to the provenance from Mongolia.[3]


Restoration of a pair

Enigmosaurus reached a length of five to seven metres, and a weight of one tonne. It is a considerably larger dinosaur than the related Erlikosaurus. The obturator process on the front edge of the ischium is horizontally elongated and low.


Enigmosaurus was by the describers assigned to a separate Enigmosauridae but later considered a member of the Segnosauridae which are today called the Therizinosauridae. Lindsay Zanno in 2010 recovered a position more basal in the Therizinosauroidea.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Barsbold, R., 1979, "Opisthopubic pelvis in the carnivorous dinosaurs. Nature. 279, 792-793
  2. ^ a b Lindsay E. Zanno (2010). "A taxonomic and phylogenetic re-evaluation of Therizinosauria (Dinosauria: Maniraptora)". Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. 8 (4): 503–543. doi:10.1080/14772019.2010.488045.
  3. ^ Barsbold, R., 1983, Жыщнйе динозаврй мела Монголий. Трудй – Совместная Совестко-Монгольской Палеотологыческая Зкспедитсия 19, pp. 5-117