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Temporal range: Early Jurassic
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Sauropsida
Superorder: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Sauropodomorpha
Infraorder: Sauropoda
Family: Vulcanodontidae
Genus: Zizhongosaurus
Dong et al., 1983
  • Z. chuanchengensis Dong et al., 1983 (type)

Zizhongosaurus (meaning "Zizhong lizard") is a genus of basal herbivorous sauropod dinosaur which lived in the Early Jurassic Period of China. It was a large-bodied herbivore characterized by a long neck.

The type species Zizhongosaurus chuanchengensis was named in 1983 by Dong Zhiming, Zhou Shiwu and Zhang Yihong. The generic name is derived from Zizhong County in Sichuan Province. The specific name refers to the town of Chuancheng.

The type specimens consist of three syntypes: V9067.1 is a partial dorsal vertebra; V9067.2 is a humerus or upper arm; and V9067.3 is a pubis. All specimens likely were part of a single skeleton. Zizhongosaurus was described as a small species.[1]

In 1999 Li Kui mentioned a second species: Zizhongosaurus huangshibanensis[2] but this has remained an undescribed nomen nudum.

Zizhongosaurus was originally assigned to the Cetiosaurinae but later authors have placed it in either the Vulcanodontidae, as a relative of Barapasaurus, or the Shunosaurinae. It is today often considered a nomen dubium.


  1. ^ Dong, Z., Zhou, S., Zhang, Y. (1983). "Dinosaurs from the Jurassic of Sichuan". Palaeontologica Sinica 162 New Series C 23. Science Press Peking: pp. 1-136
  2. ^ K. Li, Y. Zhang, K. Cai, 1999, The Characteristics of the Composition of the Trace Elements in Jurassic Dinosaur Bones and Red Beds in Sichuan Basin, Geological Publishing House, Beijing