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[dinosaur] Non-neosauropod caudal vertebrae from Upper Jurassic of Portugal

Ben Creisler

A new paper:

Pedro Mocho, Rafael Royo-Torres, Elisabete Malafaia, Fernando Escaso & Francisco Ortega (2016)
First occurrences of non-neosauropod eusauropod procoelous caudal vertebrae in the Portuguese Upper Jurassic record.
Geobios (advance online publication)
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.geobios.2016.11.001

The Upper Jurassic of the Lusitanian Basin (Portugal) is particularly rich in sauropod fossil remains, with four established taxa: Dinheirosaurus, Lusotitan, Lourinhasaurus and Zby. The presence of sauropod caudal procoelous vertebrae is reported for the first time in the Upper Jurassic of Portugal, with specimens described from the localities of Baleal, Paimogo, Praia da Areia Branca, Porto das Barcas, and Praia da Corva. The presence of slightly procoelous centra and fan-shaped caudal ribs with smooth prezygapophyseal centrodiapophyseal fossa in the more anterior caudal vertebrae allows for the assignment of these specimens to an indeterminate eusauropod, probably belonging to a non-neosauropod eusauropod form. The absence of several features in the Portuguese specimens that are common in diplodocids, mamenchisaurids and titanosaurs, prevents the establishment of sound relationships with these clades. The described specimens are almost identical to the anterior caudal vertebrae of the Iberian turiasaur Losillasaurus. During the Iberian Late Jurassic, Turiasauria is the only Iberian group of sauropods which shares this type of morphology with the Baleal, Paimogo, Praia da Areia Branca, Porto das Barcas and Praia da Corva specimens. These specimens represent one of the four anterior caudal vertebral morphotypes recorded in the Upper Jurassic of the Lusitanian Basin and briefly described herein.