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Large-sized carcharodontosaurid distal femur from Cretaceous of Spain

Ben Creisler

A new paper:

Gasca, José Manuel; Canudo, José Ignacio; Moreno-Azanza, Miguel (2014)
A large-bodied theropod (Tetanurae: Carcharodontosauria) from the
Mirambel Formation (Barremian) of Spain.
Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie - Abhandlungen 273(1): 13-23
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1127/0077-7749/2014/0413

We describe an isolated distal femur of a large-sized theropod
dinosaur from the Mirambel Formation, Teruel province, Spain. It comes
from the Ladruñán-3 fossil locality, which represents a sandstone
channel deposit that is early Barremian (Early Cretaceous) in age.
This femur can be identified as belonging to an undetermined stem
carcharodontosaurid allosauroid. The distal outline is similar to that
of the basal carcharodontosaurid Acrocanthosaurus, which bears a ridge
for the cruciate ligaments in the flexor groove and a deep but narrow
extensor groove. This new carcharodontosaurid remnant extends the
presence of this large-bodied theropod lineage in the Iberian
Peninsula back to the early Barremian. The coexistence of
carcharodontosaurids, ceratosaurians and spinosaurids in the Barremian
of the Iberian Peninsula echoes the clade composition of large-bodied
predator dinosaurs characteristic of other Early Cretaceous faunas in
Gondwana. This suggests that Early Cretaceous Iberian ecosystems were
as diverse as other Barremian European assemblages, with
carcharodontosaurids being exclusive to Iberia.