Friday, 15 December, 2017

In Argentina unearthed the largest dinosaur

Patagotitan mayorum exhibit Natural History. Patagotitan mayorum exhibit
Garry Little | 10 August, 2017, 00:21

The scientists wrote: "Here we describe a new giant titanosaur, which not only represents the largest sauropod described so far but also one of the most complete titanosaur taxa recovered to date".

Now, Scientists have officially named the species Patagotitan mayorum and have discovered that it belongs to a group of extra-large titanosaurs that lived around 100 million years ago.

Researchers aren't quite clear on how the species became so big, but study co-author José Luis Carballido, from the Museum of Palaeontology Egidio Feruglio in Argentina, believes part of it had to do with available food. The name roughly translates to the "giant from Patagonia" - with a nod to the Mayo family, who own the farm where the fossils where found. The dinosaur averaged 37 metres and was about 6 metres tall at the shoulder.

A cast of the dinosaur's skeleton is already on display at the American Museum of Natural History. However, it's so big that its head sticks out into a hallway.

Size comparison to a human.

A study of the remains suggests that Patagotitan mayorum weighed around 62 tonnes and measured more than 115ft (35m) from nose to tail.

So it's not hard to see why Pol says T. rex and other predatory dinos "look like dwarfs when you put them against one of these giant titanosaurs".

If you're struggling to picture that, it's about seven elephants, or more than two buses, or half the width of a football pitch, or somewhere between a standard swimming pool and an Olympic pool.

"I don't think they were scary at all", he said.

Although some estimates have given another Patagonian titanosaur, Argentinosaurus, the title of biggest land animal ever, with a body mass of more than 80 tonnes, these have not been based on limb measurements and may be unreliable.

In a paper published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, a team of researchers finally decided what to call this new species of prehistoric colossus: Patagotitan mayorum.

"Getting up. Walking around".

The question now, however, is how and why these animals grew to such proportions.


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