105 feet tall giant plant eating dino discovered in Argentina

November 14th, 2007 - 2:18 am ICT by admin  
The dinosaur measured at least 32 metres (105 feet), making it one of the tallest dinosaurs ever found, said lead author Jorge Calvo, director of the palaeontology centre at the National University of Comahue, Argentina.

“This is one of the biggest [dinosaurs] in the world and one of the most complete of these giants that exist,” he said.

Its name (pronounced foo-ta-long-koh-sohr-us) is derived from the Mapuche Indian words for “giant chief of the lizards” and from Duke Energy Argentina, a company which helped fund the excavation.

Scientists believe the skeleton discovered in Patagonia represents a previously unknown species because of the unique structure of its neck.

Calvo said the dinosaur’s remains possibly washed into a river, creating a barrier that collected the remains of other now-fossilised animals, fish and even leaves found at the site.

Since the first bones were found on the banks of Lake Barreales in Neuquen, Argentina in 2000, palaeontologists have dug up the dinosaur’s neck, back region, hips and the first vertebra of its tail.

Calvo said the skeleton also showed signs of its owner having being eaten by predators.

Alexander Kellner, a researcher with the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro, said the fossilised ecosystem pointed to a warm and humid climate in Patagonia, which had forests during the Late Cretaceous period. The area is steppe-like now and almost bare of vegetation.

“It’s among the biggest dinosaur finds and the most complete for a giant dinosaur. The accumulation of fish and leaf fossils, as well as other dinosaurs around the find, is just something fantastic. Leaves and dinosaurs together is a great rarity. It’s like a whole lost world for us,” said Kellner.

The study appears in the journal Annals of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences, reports the BBC. (ANI)

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Sci-Tech |