Huge Dinosaur Femur found In Spain
Palaeontologists from a dinosaur research institute in Spain have announced the discovery of the thigh bone of a huge, long-necked dinosaur. This bone, known as the femur, is the longest found in Europe to date, the colossal bone measures nearly two metres in length. This discovery is one of a number of recent finds from the famous Las Hoyas Formation in central Spain. For example, a few weeks ago, we wrote an article on the discovery of a new genus of meat-eating dinosaur from Spain – Concavenator corcovatus, a bizarre Theropod that may have had a hump on its back.
To read this article: New European Meat-eater Discovered – One Lump or Two?
The femur, which is very well preserved, is believed to have come from the body of a huge Sauropod dinosaur. Although, the species identification has yet to be confirmed, scientists involved with the excavation suspect that the thigh bone may have come from a Turiasaurus riodevensis. Remains of this huge, thirty metre long animal had been found in the same area in 2004, and this monstrous reptile was officially named and described in 2006. The name means “Teruel lizard”, as Turia is the Latin name of Teruel, the Spanish province in which the fossils were found. Alongside the enormous femur was a 1.25 metre long tibia (lower leg bone) and a number of vertebrae.
Scientists at the Site Working to Excavate the Huge Bones
Picture Credit: AFP
The Las Hoyas site is in the Iberian Mountain Ranges, it has provided scientists with a number of very well preserved specimens from the Jurassic/Cretaceous geological boundary, helping to provide palaeontologists with information on the changes to the environment and ecosystems at this important time in our planet's history. The huge Sauropod fossils date from just before the end of the Jurassic, they have been dated to around 145 million years ago.
The scientists are confident that this new material, combined with the holotype material for Turiasaurus, will enable them to attempt a reconstruction of this huge, long-necked dinosaur, which may turn out to be the biggest genus of dinosaur known from Europe to date.