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Re: Agrosaurus

On Thu, 12 Feb 1998, Dann Pigdon wrote:

> If anyone has the Agrosaurus macgillivrai paper handy, and is
> feeling in a giving mood, could someone please answer a few
> questions I have, such as:
> - the meaning of the name (generic and specific)
> - the length of the tibia
> While I've got the subject raised, does anyone know whether Agrosaurus
> is anchisaurid? Is there enough material to be anywhere certain?
> Any and all info will be appreciated, and feel free to reply off
> line.
> -- 

I don't have the original paper with me (it is very old) but there
reproductions of the illustrations in a number of texts including Don
Glut's new Encyclopaedia. It was a small
form, I have seen casts of the material, from memory the tibia was between
10 and 20 cm (not terribly usefull, I know). It is interesting to note
that the distal end of the tibia is illustrated in distal view. This shows
clearly that the distal articular surface of the tibia was square shaped,
not transversly expanded as it is in nearly all dinosaurs (including
Prosauropods). Herrerasaurus and perhaps Eoraptor (though I'll have to
wait for the monograph to be sure of this) are the exceptions, then again 
these taxa may not be dinosaurs. I'm sure this is the reason Paul Sereno
called Agrosaurus an Herrerasaurid in his origin and evolution paper last
year. In short it is unlikely that Agrosaurus is a prosauropod, it might
be an Herrerasaurid or a similar form. I think the best identification for
it is Dinosauriformes incertae sedis.
On another note, the log of the HMS Fly has been found, using this the
site at which Agrosaurus must have been collected, if it was indeed
collected in Australia at all, can be located. Unfortunately an expedition
to the area only turned up a small chip of bone. I have heard whispers
though that the expedition didn't get to the right spot.


Adam Yates