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Boutakioutichnium, tetradactyl theropod tracks from Morocco
From: Ben Creisler
New in PLoS ONE:
Nouri, J., Díaz-Martínez, I.& Pérez-Lorente, F. (2011)
Tetradactyl Footprints of an Unknown Affinity Theropod Dinosaur from the Upper
Jurassic of Morocco.
PLoS ONE 6(12): e26882.
New tetradactyl theropod footprints from Upper Jurassic
(Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian) have been found in the Iouaridène syncline (Morocco).
The tracksites are at several layers in the intermediate lacustrine unit of
Iouaridène Formation. The footprints were named informally in previous works
“Eutynichnium atlasipodus”. We consider as nomen nudum.
Boutakioutichnium atlasicus ichnogen. et ichnosp. nov. is mainly characterized
by the hallux impression. It is long, strong, directed medially or forward,
with two digital pads and with the proximal part of the first pad in lateral
position. More than 100 footprints in 15 trackways have been studied with these
features. The footprints are large, 38–48 cm in length, and 26–31 cm in width.
Boutakioutichnium mainly differs from other ichnotaxa with hallux impression in
lacking metatarsal marks and in not being a very deep footprint. The distinct
morphology of the hallux of the Boutakioutichnium trackmaker –i.e. size and
hallux position- are unique in the dinosaur autopodial record to date.