Non-sauropod Sauropodomorphs – A Useful Rationalization

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The phylogenetic relationship between the Sauropoda and the non-sauropod sauropodomorphs stays unsure. The invention of extraordinarily giant non-sauropod sauropodomorphs similar to Lessemsaurus, Antetonitrus and Ingentia within the Southern Hemisphere demonstrates that some Late Triassic dinosaurs may rival the sauropods by way of measurement.  Additional work is required to higher perceive the taxonomic relationship between the Sauropoda and different saurischian dinosaurs recognized from the Triassic and really Early Jurassic.  These saurischian dinosaurs might or might not be carefully associated to the Sauropoda clade.

The primary sauropodomorphs developed within the Triassic. Initially, they have been small and bipedal. It was thought that gigantism on this clade first developed within the Early Jurassic and was linked to the Eusauropoda, dinosaurs which have been obligate quadrupeds, with column-like legs and have been graviportal (solely able to transferring slowing). The paucity of the fossil report prevents a extra full understanding of sauropodomorph evolution. Nevertheless, with the outline of Ingentia prima (Apaldetti et al) in 2018 a brand new household of super-sized non-sauropod sauropodomorphs was established – the Lessemsauridae.

The Lessemsauridae (Non-sauropod Sauropodomorphs)

The Lessemsauridae attained an especially giant physique measurement. These dinosaurs have been a lot bigger and heavier than the biggest terrestrial mammals discovered right now. They show fast progress associated to the seasonal availability of meals. As well as, their skeletons display many anatomical traits related to basal sauropodomorphs while missing traits beforehand considered variations to gigantism.

Members of this household embody Ingentia prima from the Quebrada del Barro Formation and Lessemsaurus sauropoides from the Los Colorados Formation (Argentina).  As well as, the Early Jurassic sauropodomorph Antetonitrus ingenipes from the Elliot Formation of South Africa has been included.  Extra lately different taxa from southern Africa have been added to this clade. Dinosaurs similar to Meroktenos and Kholumolumo from Lesotho, and the massive Ledumahadi mafube from South Africa.

Ledumahadi mafube illustrated.

A life reconstruction of Ledumahadi mafube.  Lately this dinosaur has been assigned to the Lessemsauridae clade.

Image credit score: Viktor Radermacher (Witwatersrand College)

A spokesperson from All the things Dinosaur commented:

“The outdated definitions of prosauropod and sauropod proved too simplistic.  The evolution of super-sized, herbivorous dinosaurs within the Early Jurassic stays poorly outlined.  Hopefully, extra full fossil materials from the Norian and Rhaetian faunal levels will assist to make clear the taxonomy.”

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