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Early Jurassic ornithischian and theropod footprints from Yunnan Province, China

Ben Creisler

A new online paper:

Lida Xing, Martin G. Lockley, Jianping Zhang, Hailu You, Hendrik
Klein, W. Scott Persons IV, Hui Dai & Zhiming Dong (2015)
First Early Jurassic Ornithischian and theropod footprint assemblage
and a new ichnotaxon Shenmuichnus wangi ichnosp. nov. from Yunnan
Province, southwestern China.
Historical Biology (advance online publication)

The new ichnospecies, Shenmuichnus wangi ichnosp. nov., is the first
evidence for the presence of large ornithischians in the Early
Jurassic of Yunnan Province, whereas the known skeletal record
documents small species only. Until now Shenmuichnus was known from a
single locality in Shaanxi Province by the ichnospecies Shenmuichnus
youngteilhardorum. Compared with the latter, Shenmuichnus wangi is
larger and shows a different trackway configuration, particularly in
the relative position of manus and pes imprints. Palecologically, the
occurrence of Shenmuichnus wangi in a red bed facies indicates the
preference of distinctive environments of trackmakers of both
ichnospecies, questioning former hypotheses of exclusivity of
ornithischians in more humid climates. By abundance both skeletons and
footprints of ornithischians suggest their role as a minor component
in Early Jurassic saurischian dominated dinosaur faunas in this