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giant Spanish sauropod



Last 26 February the discovery of a gigantic Spanish sauropod was announced to 
the mass media. Currently, few is know of this sauropod, which it is still in 
process of digging under the direction of my colleague Rafael Royo, from the 
Conjunto Paleontologico de Teruel (Paleontological Network Foundation of 
Teruel) in Teruel, Spain. 

Apart from the 178 cm long humerus and the 30 (or 35) cm long claw, remains of 
scapular and pelvic girdles, fore and hind limbs (including a complete manus) 
and vertebrae are known (Moreno, 2004). More information on this sauropod (in 
spanish, sorry) can be obtained in:

http://www.paleontologia-hispana.com/noticias/
http://www.dinopolis.com/noticias/plantilla.htm?cod=183&cat=

A press release is in: 

http://www.paleontologia-hispana.com/noticias/index.php?subaction=showfull&id=1077730829&archive=&cnshow=news&start_from=&ucat=&;

and another press release (from "Diario de Teruel"), with several pictures of 
the bones, can be downloaded in pdf format:

http://www.paleontologia-hispana.com/noticias/pdf/Riodevasaurus.pdf

The sauropod comes from the village of Riodeva, in the southernmost part of 
Teruel Province, Aragon autonomous community, Spain. The sauropod site is one 
of the seventeen known in Riodeva, with stegosaurs, theropod and sauropod 
remains (Royo-Torres et al., 2003), all recently discovered and still 
unpublished.

The age of this sauropod is controversial, it comes from continental beds 
overlying the Upper Jurassic marine beds, Probably it comes form the same 
formation (El Collado formation) that produce stegosaurs (Dacentrurus) and 
another sauropod (Losillasaurus) in the northermost part of the Valencia 
Province, and its age could be Uppermost Jurassic-Lowermost Cretaceous 
(Tithonian-Berriasian) or Lower Cretaceous (Barremian). 

The new sauropod is near (20 km north) of Losilla de Aras, the small village 
that originated the Losillasaurus holotype (Casanovas et al., 2001). 

It seems that gigantic sauropods were common in this age in Spain. Apart form 
Losillasaurus and the Riodeva sauropod, there are two more big sauropods from 
Valencia, bigger that Losillasaurus, one in Baldobar, 10 Km south of Losilla de 
Aras, in process of study (Gaete et al., 2002), and another in a near village 
in process of digging by Maite Suñer and Carlos Santisteban of the Valencia 
University.

REFS:

Casanovas, M.L., Santafé, J. V. & Sanz, J.L. 2001. Losillasaurus giganteus, un 
nuevo saurópodo del tránsito Jurásico-Cretácico de la cuenca de "Los Serranos" 
(Valencia, España). Paleontologia i Evolució, 32-33, 99-122.

Gaete, R., Santisteban, C., Galobart, A., Company, J., Marin, D. & Suñer, M. 
2002. Algunos restos de saurópodos en la Formación Villar del Arzobispo 
(Jurásico Superior) de Alpuente (Los Serranos, Valencia). Resúmenes. Congreso 
Internacional sobre dinosaurios y otros reptiles mesozóicos de España. Logroño 
26-29 Noviembre 2002, 20-21.

Moreno, M. A. 2004. Riodeva. Cómo buscar un dinosaurio... y encontrarlo. 
Heraldo de Aragón, domingo 29 de febrero de 2004, 26-27.

Royo-Torres, R., Cobos, A., Alcalá, L. & Bello, Y. 2003. Primeros restos de 
dinosaurio en el Cretácico Inferior de Riodeva (Teruel). Libro de Resúmenes. 
XIX Jornadas Españolas de Paleontología, Morella 2003, 147.
-- 

-------------------------
Jose Ignacio Ruiz-Omeñaca
Departamento de Ciencias de la Tierra
Area de Paleontologia
Universidad de Zaragoza
E-50009 ZARAGOZA, SPAIN

tel: (+34) 976 761000 ext. 3160
fax: (+34) 976 761106
e-mail: jigruiz@unizar.es
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