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Dahalokely, new abelisauroid theropod from Cretaceous of Madagascar



From: Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

A new paper from PLoS ONE:


Andrew A. Farke &  Joseph J. W. Sertich (2013)
An abelisauroid theropod dinosaur from the Turonian of Madagascar.
PLOS ONE 8(4).
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0062047
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0062047

Geophysical evidence strongly supports the complete isolation of India
and Madagascar (Indo-Madagascar) by ~100 million years ago, though
sparse terrestrial fossil records from these regions prior to ~70
million years ago have limited insights into their biogeographic
history during the Cretaceous. A new theropod dinosaur, Dahalokely
tokana, from Turonian-aged (~90 million years old) strata of
northernmost Madagascar is represented by a partial axial column.
Autapomorphies include a prominently convex prezygoepipophyseal lamina
on cervical vertebrae and a divided infraprezygapophyseal fossa
through the mid-dorsal region, among others. Phylogenetic analysis
definitively recovers the species as an abelisauroid theropod and
weakly as a noasaurid. Dahalokely is the only known dinosaur from the
interval during which Indo-Madagascar likely existed as a distinct
landmass, but more complete material is needed to evaluate whether or
not it is more closely related to later abelisauroids of
Indo-Madagascar or those known elsewhere in Gondwana.

News release:

http://phys.org/news/2013-04-carnivorous-dinosaur-madagascar.html