Lusotitan

Lusotitan is a genus of herbivorous brachiosaurid sauropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic Period of Portugal.

In 1947 Manuel de Matos, a member of the Geological Survey of Portugal, discovered large sauropod fossils in the Portuguese Lourinhã Formation that date back to the Tithonian stage of the Late Jurassic period.[1] In 1957 Albert-Félix de Lapparent and Georges Zbyszewski named the remains as a new species of Brachiosaurus: Brachiosaurus atalaiensis.[2] The specific name referred to the site Atalaia. In 2003 Octávio Mateus and Miguel Telles Antunes named it as a separate genus: Lusotitan. The type species is Lusotitan atalaiensis. The generic name is derived from Luso, the Latin name for an inhabitant of Lusitania, and from the Greek word "Titan", a mythological giant.[1]

Lusotitan caudals
Caudal vertebrae of Lusotitan

The finds consisted of a partial skeleton lacking the skull and individual vertebrae uncovered in several locations. De Lapparent did not assign a holotype. In 2003 Mateus chose the skeleton as the lectotype. Its bones have the inventory numbers MIGM 4798, 4801–10, 4938, 4944, 4950, 4952, 4958, 4964–6, 4981–2, 4985, 8807, and 8793-5. These remains include 28 vertebrae and elements of the appendicular skeleton.

It has been estimated that Lusotitan was 25 meters (82 feet) long. It had long forearms, one of the reasons Mateus assigned it to the Brachiosauridae.

The lectotype was re-described by Mannion and colleagues in 2013.[3]

Lusotitan
Temporal range: Late Jurassic, 152 Ma
Lusotitan humerus
Holotype humerus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Clade: Dinosauria
Order: Saurischia
Suborder: Sauropodomorpha
Clade: Sauropoda
Family: Brachiosauridae
Genus: Lusotitan
Antunes & Mateus, 2003
Species:
L. atalaiensis
Binomial name
Lusotitan atalaiensis
(Lapparent & Zbyszewski, 1957 [originally Brachiosaurus])
Synonyms

Brachiosaurus atalaiensis Lapparent & Zbyszewski, 1957

Paleoecology

Lusotitan
Hypothetical reconstruction of Lusotitan

The Lourinhã Formation of western Portugal was likely to be formed during the Kimmeridgian or Tithonian ages of the Late Jurassic period. The area is a coastal region with a strong marine influence. Its flora and fauna are similar to the Morrison Formation in the United States, and the Tendaguru Formation in Tanzania. Lusotitan is the largest dinosaur that has been discovered in the area. Lusotitan lived alongside species of the predatory theropods Allosaurus (A. europaeus), Ceratosaurus, Lourinhanosaurus, and Torvosaurus, the ankylosaurian Dracopelta, the sauropods Supersaurus, Lourinhasaurus, and Zby, and the stegosaurs Dacentrurus and Miragaia.[4]

References

  1. ^ a b Antunes, Miguel; Mateus, Octavio (2003). "Dinosaurs of Portugal". Comptes Rendus Palevol. 2 (1): 77–95. doi:10.1016/S1631-0683(03)00003-4.
  2. ^ A.F. de Lapparent & G. Zbyszewski, 1957, "Les dinosauriens du Portugal", Mémoires des Services Géologiques du Portugal, nouvelle série 2: 1–63
  3. ^ Mannion, Philip D.; Upchurch, Paul; Barnes, Rosie N.; Mateus, Octávio (2013). "Osteology of the Late Jurassic Portuguese sauropod dinosaur Lusotitan atalaiensis (Macronaria) and the evolutionary history of basal titanosauriforms". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society. 168: 98. doi:10.1111/zoj.12029.
  4. ^ Octávio Mateus. Late Jurassic dinosaurs from the Morrison Formation (USA) included the Lourinhã and Alcobaça Formations (Portugal), and the Tendaguru Beds (Tanzania). Foster, J.R. and Lucas, S. G. R.M., eds., 2006, Paleontology and Geology of the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation. New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science Bulletin 36.
Amargatitanis

Amargatitanis (meaning "Amarga giant") is a genus of dicraeosaurid sauropod dinosaur (a type of large, long-necked quadrupedal herbivorous dinosaur) from the Barremian-age (Lower Cretaceous) La Amarga Formation of Neuquén, Argentina.

Arkharavia

Arkharavia is a dubious genus of somphospondylan sauropod, but at least some of the remains probably belong to a hadrosaurid. It lived in what is now Russia, during the Late Cretaceous. It was described in 2010 by Alifanov and Bolotsky. The type species is A. heterocoelica.

Baotianmansaurus

Baotianmansaurus is a genus of titanosaur sauropod dinosaur. Its fossils have been found in Upper Cretaceous rocks in Henan, China, within the Gaogou Formation. The type species is B. henanensis, described in 2009. The holotype is 41H III-0200. Remains of the fossils were vertebrae, ribs and scapula fragments. It was probably a close relative of Opisthocoelicaudia and Dongyangosaurus in Saltasauridae.

Brachiosauridae

The Brachiosauridae ("arm lizards", from Greek brachion (βραχίων) = "arm" and sauros = "lizard") are a family or clade of herbivorous, quadrupedal sauropod dinosaurs. Brachiosaurids had long necks that enabled them to access the leaves of tall trees that other sauropods would have been unable to reach. In addition, they possessed thick spoon-shaped teeth which helped them to consume tough plants more efficiently than other sauropods. They have also been characterized by a few unique traits or synapomorphies; dorsal vertebrae with 'rod-like' transverse processes and an ischium with an abbreviated pubic peduncle.Brachiosaurus is one of the best-known members of the Brachiosauridae, and was once thought to be the largest land animal to ever live. Brachiosaurids thrived in the regions which are now North and South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. They first appear in the fossil record in the Late Jurassic Period and disappear in the late Early Cretaceous Period. The broad distribution of Brachiosauridae in both northern and southern continents suggests that the group originated prior to the breakup of Pangaea. In the Early Cretaceous the distribution of the group is dramatically reduced. It is still unclear whether this reduction is due to local extinctions or to the limited nature of the Early Cretaceous fossil record.Brachiosauridae has been defined as all titanosauriforms that are more closely related to Brachiosaurus than to Saltasaurus. It is one of the three main groups of the clade Titanosauriformes, which also includes the Euhelopodidae and the Titanosauria.

Dongyangosaurus

Dongyangosaurus is a genus of saltasaurid sauropod dinosaur from the early Late Cretaceous. The only species is Dongyangosaurus sinensis, from which only a single fragmentary skeleton is known, coming from the Zhejiang province of eastern China. It was described and named by Lü Junchang and colleagues Like other sauropods, Dongyangosaurus would have been a large quadrupedal herbivore.

Europasaurus

Europasaurus is a basal macronarian sauropod, a form of quadrupedal herbivorous dinosaur. It lived during the Late Jurassic (middle Kimmeridgian, about 154 million years ago) of northern Germany, and has been identified as an example of insular dwarfism resulting from the isolation of a sauropod population on an island within the Lower Saxony basin.

Flagellicaudata

Flagellicaudata is a clade of Dinosauria. It belongs to Sauropoda and includes two families, the Dicraeosauridae and the Diplodocidae.

Gobititan

Gobititan is a genus of herbivorous sauropod dinosaur from the Barremian faunal stage of the Early Cretaceous, approximately 129-125 million years ago. The name of this genus, is derived from the Gobi desert region and the Titans of Greek mythology, which is a reference to its large body size. The specific name shenzhouensis, is derived from "Shenzhou", an ancient name for China.

Gravisauria

Gravisauria is a clade of sauropod dinosaurs consisting of some genera, Vulcanodontidae and Eusauropoda.

Huangshanlong

Huangshanlong is a genus of mamenchisaurid dinosaurs native to the Anhui province of China. It contains a single species, Huangshanlong anhuiensis. H. anhuiensis represents, along with Anhuilong and Wannanosaurus, one of three dinosaurs fround in Anhui province.

Kaijutitan

Kaijutitan (meaning "Kaiju titan" after the type of Japanese movie monsters) is a genus of basal titanosaur dinosaur from the Sierra Barrosa Formation from Neuquén Province in Argentina. The type and only species is Kaijutitan maui.

Malarguesaurus

Malarguesaurus is a genus of titanosauriform sauropod dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Mendoza Province, Argentina. Its fossils, consisting of tail vertebrae, chevrons, ribs, and limb bones, were found in the late Turonian-early Coniacian-age (~89 million years old) Portezuelo Formation of the Neuquén Group. The type species, described by González Riga et al. in 2008, is M. florenciae.

Octávio Mateus

Octávio Mateus (born 1975) is a Portuguese dinosaur paleontologist and biologist Professor of Paleontology at the Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade Nova de Lisboa. He graduated in Universidade de Évora and received his PhD at Universidade Nova de Lisboa in 2005. He collaborates with Museu da Lourinhã, known for their dinosaur collection.

A student of Miguel Telles Antunes, he is a specialist in dinosaurs, having studied Late Jurassic dinosaurs of Portugal.

He has named new dinosaur species such as Lourinhanosaurus antunesi (1998), Dinheirosaurus lourinhanensis, Tangvayosaurus hoffeti (1999), Draconyx loureiroi (2001), Lusotitan atalaiensis (2003), Europasaurus holgeri (2006), and Allosaurus europaeus (2006), Torvosaurus gurneyi Hendrickx & Mateus, 2014, and Galeamopus (2015).Since 1991 Octávio Mateus has organized dinosaur excavations in Portugal, as well as excavating in Laos (Asian Southeast) with the French team of the Paris Museum of Natural History, led by Prof. Philippe Taquet. He has recently worked in Angola, where he discovered the first Angolan dinosaur in the scope of a project in the area of vertebrate paleontology of Angola.

He collaborates with diverse international scientific institutions as the scientific council member of the German foundation Verein zur Förderung der niedersächsischen Paläontologie.

He also studied dinosaur tracks and eggs, phytosaurs, chelonians, and whales.

In 2012 he integrated an expedition to the Triassic of Greenland in Jameson Land.

Ornithopsis

Ornithopsis (meaning "bird-likeness") was a medium-sized Early Cretaceous sauropod dinosaur, from England.

Phuwiangosaurus

Phuwiangosaurus (meaning "Phu Wiang lizard") is a genus of titanosauriform dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous (Valanginian-Hauterivian) Sao Khua Formation of Thailand. The type species, P. sirindhornae, was described by Martin, Buffetaut, and Suteethorn in 1994; it was named to honour Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand, who was interested in the geology and palaeontology of Thailand.

It was a mid-sized sauropod, measuring 15–20 m in length.

Phuwiangosaurus was originally assigned to Titanosauria, but more recent studies have placed it in a more basal position within the Titanosauriformes. Phylogenetic analyses presented by D'Emic (2012), Mannion et al. (2013), and Mocho et al. (2014) resolve Phuwiangosaurus within the Euhelopodidae, alongside genera such as Euhelopus and Tangvayosaurus. Other analyses have failed to find support for such a grouping, including some finding it to be paraphyletic at the base of Somphospondyli.

Ruyangosaurus

Ruyangosaurus (Ruyang County lizard) is a genus of titanosauriform sauropod dinosaur recovered from the Early Cretaceous Haoling Formation of China. The type species is R. giganteus, described in 2009 by Lü Junchang et al. Along with Huanghetitan and Daxiatitan, Ruyangosaurus is among the largest dinosaurs discovered in Cretaceous Asia.

Somphospondyli

Somphospondylans are an extinct clade of titanosauriform sauropods that lived throughout the world from the Late Jurassic through the Cretaceous in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia. The group can be defined as "the most inclusive clade that includes Saltasaurus loricatus but excludes Brachiosaurus altithorax". Features found as diagnostic of this clade by Mannion et al. (2013) include the possession of at least 15 cervical vertebrae; a bevelled radius bone end; sacral vertebrae with camellate internal texture; convex posterior articular surfaces of middle to posterior caudal vertebrae; biconvex distal caudal vertebrae; humerus anterolateral corner "squared"; among multiple others.

Tambatitanis

Tambatitanis is an extinct genus of titanosauriform dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous (probably early Albian) of Japan. It is known from a single type species, Tambatitanis amicitiae. It was probably around 14 meters long and its mass was estimated at some 4 tonnes. It was a basal titanosauriform and possibly belonged to the Euhelopodidae.

Wamweracaudia

Wamweracaudia is a large herbivorous sauropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic Tendaguru Formation of Tanzania, Africa, 155 million years ago.

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