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Dinosaur Genera List corrections #117



As I expected it might (see my previous Dinosaur Genera List corrections), 
today's (November 4, 1999) San Diego Union-Tribune carries an article on the 
Oklahoma giant sauropod Sauroposeidon proteles on page A-10. The article is 
bylined Linda Franklin, Associated Press. This constitutes publication of the 
name as far as the Dinosaur Genera List is concerned, so I add as name #865

Sauroposeidon Wedel & Cifelli vide Franklin, 1999 [nomen nudum]

According to the article, a scientific description of the new genus and 
species will appear in the March 2000 issue of the Journal of Vertebrate 
Paleontology. The material consists of a series of four cervical vertebrae 
between 17 and 18 feet long; the longest individual vertebra is five feet 
long. This extrapolates to a neck 39-40 feet long, which would be about as 
long as or even longer than the extrapolated neck lengths for the Chinese 
sauropods Mamenchisaurus sinocanadorum and Hudiesaurus sinojapanorum. This 
would make it one of the longest known necks of any terrestrial vertebrate. 
Presumably the rest of the animal scaled accordingly, which is presumably 
where the body size (six stories tall) and weight (60 tons) estimates in the 
article come from. The article featured a photograph of one of the vertebrae.

The age of the specimen is given as Early Cretaceous, about 110 Ma. Jack 
McIntosh is quoted as saying the vertebrae are unlike any other sauropod 
vertebrae from the Cretaceous; the description of the sauropod as 
"giraffe-like" suggests that Sauroposeidon was a giant brachiosaurid. The 
pictured vertebra certainly reminds me of a brachiosaurid. The article notes 
that the name Sauroposeidon proteles was coined by Oklahoma University 
graduate student Matt Wedel, who is working on the description with Richard 
Cifelli.

Let me also correct the publication year for the dinosaur Saturnalia (see 
previous Dinosaur Genera List corrections) to 1999. The 1998 date seems to be 
a typographical error in the original email to me; the cited reference has a 
volume number that goes with 1999, not 1998.