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Overview of Dinosaurs from Chile



From: Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com


A new online article:


David Rubilar-Rogers, Rodrigo A. Otero, Roberto E. Yury-Yáñez,
Alexander O. Vargas, Carolina S. Gutstein (2012)
An Overview Of The Dinosaur Fossil Record From Chile.
Journal of South American Earth Sciences (advance online publication)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsames.2012.03.003
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0895981112000338?v=s5


In Chile, the record of dinosaurs in Jurassic and Cretaceous sediments
is often restricted to footprints, and few skeletal remains are known,
with a single occurrence of tetanuran theropods in the Upper Jurassic,
and bones of titanosaur sauropods in the Late Cretaceous, including
partial skeletons (e.g. Atacamatitan chilensis Kellner et al.). Also
from the late Cretaceous, an ornithopod vertebra, a pair of theropod
teeth and one tarsometatarsus of a gaviiform bird (Neogaeornis wetzeli
Lambrecht) have been reported. The Cenozoic fossil record comprises
abundant and well preserved marine birds from Eocene and Miocene
units, with a specially abundant record of Sphenisciformes and less
frequently, Procellariiformes. There is an excellent Miocene-Pliocene
record of other birds such as Odontopterygiformes, including the most
complete skeleton ever found of a pelagornithid, Pelagornis chilensis
Mayr and Rubilar-Rogers. Fossil birds are also known from Pliocene and
Pleistocene strata. A remarkable collection of birds was discovered in
lacustrine sediments of late Pleistocene age associated to human
activity. The perspectives in the study of dinosaurs in Chile are
promising because plenty of material stored in institutional
collections is not described yet. The record of Chilean dinosaurs is
relevant for understanding the dynamics and evolution of this group of
terrestrial animals in the western edge of Gondwana, while Cenozoic
birds from the Region may contribute to the understanding of current
biogeography for instance, the effect of the emergence and
establishment of the Humboldt Current.