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Re: Sauropod extinction



At 12:22 PM 7/24/98 -0400, Sherry Michael wrote:
>Since I'm feeling chatty today, I'll start another sauropod thread:
>
>What do you think happened to the sauropods at the end of the Jurassic?

Less than you might think!

Certain proclimation of the Bearded One aside, most lineages of sauropod
found in the Morrison are also found in the Early Cretaceous of western
North America: camarasaurid, brachiosaurid, even titanosaurian (not known in
the Morrison, but present in the Tendaguru).

What DOES seem to be missing from the North American Cretaceous is
diplodocoids, which had been very common in the Morrison.  Diplodocoids
survived elsewhere, but not (as far as I've heard reported) in the U.S.

Don't forget, the first sauropods found in the U.S. are from the
mid-Cretaceous (Astrodon, for the mid-K of Maryland) and the famous Paluxy
tracksite is around the same age.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Vertebrate Paleontologist     Webpage: http://www.geol.umd.edu
Dept. of Geology              Email:th81@umail.umd.edu
University of Maryland        Phone:301-405-4084
College Park, MD  20742       Fax:  301-314-9661