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Jialingpus theropod tracks from Cretaceous of Ordos Basin, China

From: Ben Creisler

A new online paper:

Li-Da Xing, Martin G. Lockley, Hendrik Klein, Gerard D. Gierliński,
Julien D. Divay, Song-Mei Hu, Jian-Ping Zhang, Yong Ye & Yi-Ping He
The non-avian theropod track Jialingpus from the Cretaceous of the
Ordos Basin, China, with a revision of the type material: Implications
for ichnotaxonomy and trackmaker morphology.
Palaeoworld (advance online publication)

Deposits from the Ordos Basin of mid-western China are rich in body
fossils and ichnofossils of Early Cretaceous vertebrates. Thousands of
Early Cretaceous sauropod, theropod and bird tracks described since
1958 have been found at several localities in the basin. We report two
new sites (Dijiaping and Bawangzhuang) in the Luohe Formation of the
Ordos Basin, Shaanxi Province, which contain small theropod footprints
that are here referred to the ichnogenus Jialingpus. The assignment is
based on pad configurations including (1) the large
metatarsophalangeal area positioned in line with the axis of digit
III, (2) the subdivision of this part into a small pad behind digit
II, which in some specimens is close to the general position of the
hallux (digit I), and a large metatarsophalangeal pad behind digit IV,
(3) a distinct inter-pad space between metatarsophalangeal pads and
proximal phalangeal pads of digits II and III. We re-describe the type
material of the type ichnospecies Jialingpus yuechiensis from the
Upper Jurassic Penglaizhen Formation of Sichuan Province, proposing a
largely amended diagnosis for this ichnotaxon. The presence of a digit
I trace in the holotype, indicating a relatively long hallux, and the
large metatarsophalangeal area positioned in line with digit III
distinguishes Jialingpus from the ichnogenus Grallator and similar
tracks that all lack these features. The only difference between
Jialingpus specimens from the Cretaceous of the Ordos Basin and those
of the Jurassic Penglaizhen Formation is the larger digit divarication
in the Cretaceous taxon. This is the fourth record of Jialingpus in
China and the second in Cretaceous strata, with the first being those
from the Huangyangquan locality in Xinjiang, China.