Paige E. dePolo, Stephen L. Brusatte, Thomas J. Challands, Davide Foffa, Dugald A. Ross, Mark Wilkinson & Hong-yu Yi (2018)
A sauropod-dominated tracksite from Rubha nam Brathairean (Brothersâ Point), Isle of Skye, Scotland.
Scottish Journal of Geology (advance online publication)
Middle Jurassic dinosaur fossils are exceedingly rare, but new discoveries from the Isle of Skye, Scotland, are beginning to fill this gap. We here describe a new dinosaur tracksite found in the Lealt Shale Formation (Bathonian) of the Great Estuarine Group at Rubha nam Brathairean (Brothers' Point) on Skye. The site preserves an abundance of small sauropod manus and pes prints and several isolated and broken medium-to-large tridactyl footprints. The main site occurs on a single horizon of shaley limestone that formed in a lagoonal environment. The sauropod tracks are tentatively assigned to the ichnotaxon Breviparopus due to the narrow gauge of the trackways, the digital characteristics of the pes, and the ratio of heteropody observed between the manus and the pes. A theropod trackmaker is inferred for some of the tridactyl impressions with several indicative of the ichnotaxon Eubrontes. This new site strengthens the inference, originally based on a previously discovered locality near Duntulm Castle (Duntulm Formation) in northern Skye, that sauropods habitually spent time in lagoons during the Middle Jurassic.
Huge Dinosaur Footprints Discovered on Scottish Coast