[<<<] [Project 0] [>>>]
"Scientists report new dinosaur species"
Scientists report new dinosaur species
trefwoorden: nieuwe - dinosaurus - soort - Chili
Two Chilean scientists said on Thursday they had discovered a new species of dinosaur.
It is a long-necked plant eater that roamed the region 70 million years ago. Paleontologists David Rubilar, 28, and Alexander Vargas, 26, named their find "Domeykosaurus chilensis" after 19th Century Chilean scientist Ignacio Domeyko. They said it is unlike any other specimen found so far.
They have assembled about 40 percent of the skeleton from fossils a geologist stumbled on several years ago in northern Chile, forming the most complete specimen ever found in Chile. The find has yet to be officially approved by the scientific community.
"When we first figured out that this was something new, we visited fossil collections in Argentina and Brazil and we realized this creature has no name," Vargas said.
Fed on trees
The single skeleton belongs to a little-known family of dinosaurs called Titanosaurus, which have long tails and a long but inflexible neck. Titanosaurus fossils have been found in South America, Madagascar and India.
Vargas and Rubilar, wearing scruffy jeans and grinning shyly next to a display of dinosaur bones in Santiago's natural history museum, said the domeykosaurus likely fed on araucaria, also known as monkey-puzzle trees, which are native to the area.
The animal, which lived near the end of the dinosaur age in the Late Cretaceous period, measured about 25 feet (eight meters) long and its hips reached a height of about 6.5 feet (two meters).
More elongated and thin
What sets the Chilean dinosaur apart from other species is that its extremities are slightly more elongated and thin, the scientists said.
Rubilar and Vargas expect to publish their study in a Chilean geological journal later this year, a required step before their find is accepted as a new species.
Renowned Argentine paleontologist Rodolfo Coria doubted their findings would be disputed.
"It's quite likely this is a new species, I hope so," he said. "There are no (unique) Chilean dinosaurs (species to date) because usually the fossils are not well enough preserved to be able to determine if it is a new species or not," said the expert, who has personally discovered a dozen new species in the past decade in Argentine Patagonia.
bron: CNN, 2 juni 2003