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Dinosaur and pterosaur material from Mongolia and Japan + new Hupehsuchus specimen



Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

Dinosaur, pterosaur material  from Japan and Mongolia in the new
special issue of Historical Biology:


DINOSAURS

Takanobu Tsuihiji, Rinchen Barsbold, Mahito Watabe, Khishigjav
Tsogtbaatar, Shigeru Suzuki & Soki Hattori (2016)
New material of a troodontid theropod (Dinosauria: Saurischia) from
the Lower Cretaceous of Mongolia.
Historical Biology 28(1-2): 128-138
Special Issue:   Contributions to vertebrate palaeontology in honour
of Yukimitsu Tomida
DOI:10.1080/08912963.2015.1005086
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08912963.2015.1005086

New material of a troodontid theropod from Khamaryn Ar in Mongolia,
representing the second troodontid specimen described from the Lower
Cretaceous of the Gobi Basin, is reported. This material consists
mainly of caudal, manual and pedal bones, and can be assigned to
Troodontidae based on the presence of derived features such as distal
caudals bearing sulci on neural arches instead of neural spines,
asymmetrical pes with slender metatarsal II and robust metatarsal IV,
and pedal phalanx II-2 with the distal articular surface less than
half the size of the proximal surface. The present specimen is
considered merely as Troodontidae gen. et sp. indet. because of the
lack of definitive autapomorphies. The present finding suggests that
further exploration of the Lower Cretaceous in the Gobi Basin may
still provide much new information on the theropod fauna in this
region.

***

Naoki Ikegami (2016)
The first record of an ornithomimosaurian dinosaur from the Upper
Cretaceous of Japan.
Historical Biology 28(1-2): 264-269
Special Issue:   Contributions to vertebrate palaeontology in honour
of Yukimitsu Tomida
DOI:10.1080/08912963.2015.1025389
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08912963.2015.1025389


Ornithomimosaurs have unusual characters among theropod dinosaurs, and
many records of these animals have been reported previously from Asia
and North America. However, the fossil record of ornithomimosaurs is
limited and was not known from the Upper Cretaceous in Japan despite
its many dinosaur discoveries. Here, the first fossil of an
ornithomimosaurian dinosaur from the Upper Cretaceous in Japan is
described from the Upper Formation of the Mifune Group in Kumamoto
Prefecture, Southwest Japan. This new discovery indicates the
existence of ornithomimosaurs in the Late Cretaceous coastal areas of
East Asia under a semi-arid climate. The occurrences of
ornithomimosaur fossils described here are consistent with the
presence of many fossil records from a dry climate rather than the
humid conditions in the Cretaceous deposits of Asian mainland today.

***

Paul M. Barrett & Tomoyuki Ohashi (2016)
Ornithischian dinosaur material from the Kuwajima Formation (Tetori
Group: Lower Cretaceous) of Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan.
Historical Biology 28(1-2):  280-288
Special Issue:   Contributions to vertebrate palaeontology in honour
of Yukimitsu Tomida
DOI:10.1080/08912963.2015.1032273
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08912963.2015.1032273

The Kumajima Formation (Lower Cretaceous: ?Hauterivian–Barremian) of
Ishikawa Prefecture, central Honshu, Japan, has yielded a diverse
vertebrate fauna that includes a variety of dinosaur taxa. Here, we
describe teeth and cranial elements that are referable to an
indeterminate styracosternan iguanodontian, an additional unnamed
small ornithischian (represented by an isolated maxilla) that is
distinct from Albalophosaurus, and other indeterminate ornithischian
remains that may belong to the unnamed taxon, Albalophosaurus or
another ‘basal’ ornithischian taxon. Iguanodontian specimens are
numerically dominant in the available sample of dinosaur material. The
Kuwajima Formation has yielded the most diverse dinosaur fauna from
Japan and provides a useful point of comparison with other
better-known East Asian dinosaur faunas, such as that of the Chinese
Jehol Biota.


=======

PTEROSAURS

Alexander W.A. Kellner, Fabiana R. Costa, Xiaolin Wang & Xin Cheng (2016)
Redescription of the first pterosaur remains from Japan: the largest
flying reptile from Asia.
Historical Biology 28(1-2):  304-309
Special Issue:   Contributions to vertebrate palaeontology in honour
of Yukimitsu Tomida
DOI:10.1080/08912963.2015.1028929
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08912963.2015.1028929

Pterosaur remains are found in numerous deposits of the world, but
most are isolated and fragmentary elements. This is the case of Japan
where a small number of specimens from those volant reptiles have been
reported. Here, we redescribe the first pterosaur remains from Japan
(NSM PV15005) that were found in outcrops of the Upper Cretaceous Yezo
Group (Santonian–lower Campanian) in the Mikasa area of Hokkaido.
Further preparation of this material revealed several pterosaur bones,
including the distal end of a left femur, a non-ungual phalanx and a
proximal caudal vertebra. Based on the double-condyle articulation of
the caudal element and the main features of the femur, this specimen
is referred to a pteranodontid-like pterosaur. Its wingspan is
estimated to be around 6.8 m, making it the largest pterosaur recorded
not only from Japan, but also from Asia so far, indicating that large
flying reptiles were widespread worldwide during the Upper Cretaceous.

====

Hupehsuchus

Xiao-Chun Wu, Li-Jun Zhao, Tamaki Sato, Sheng-Xiao Gu & Xing-Sheng Jin (2016)
A new specimen of Hupehsuchus nanchangensis Young, 1972 (Diapsida,
Hupehsuchia) from the Triassic of Hubei, China
Historical Biology 28(1-2): 43-52
Special Issue:   Contributions to vertebrate palaeontology in honour
of Yukimitsu Tomida
DOI:10.1080/08912963.2015.1013953
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08912963.2015.1013953

Hupehsuchus nanchangensis has been known from five specimens from the
Triassic of China since its type was found in 1972. However, our
knowledge of its morphology is still limited because of the poor
preservation of the known specimens. This article aims to (1) update
the morphological information of the animal on the basis of a new
specimen from the same stratum of the type in the neighbouring Yuanan
County, Hubei Province, China; (2) revise the diagnostic features of
the animal and (3) make a detailed comparison to demonstrate if the
members of Hupehsuchia are different from one another. Considering the
body shape, the anatomy and relationships of those bones surrounding
the orbit and temporal fenestrae, the sharply curved boomerang-shaped
lateral elements of the gastralia, the semicircular scapula and
bar-like ilium, Hupehsuchus nanchangensis can be easily distinguished
from coeval Nanchangosaurus suni or Parahupehsuchus longus or
Eohupehsuchus brevicollis. The body shape and limb morphology suggest
that Hupehsuchus nanchangensis must have had a different mode of
lifestyle from that of other three hupehsuchians.