Osteological revision of the holotype of the Middle Jurassic sauropod dinosaur Patagosaurus fariasi Bonaparte, 1979 (Sauropoda: Cetiosauridae)

Femke M. HOLWERDA, Oliver W. M. RAUHUT & Diego POL

en Geodiversitas 43 (16) - Pages 575-643

Published on 22 July 2021

Middle Jurassic sauropod taxa are poorly known, due to a stratigraphic bias of localities yielding body fossils. One such locality is Cerro Cóndor North, Cañadón Asfalto Formation, Patagonia, Argentina, dated to latest Early−Middle Jurassic. From this locality, the holotype of Patagosaurus fariasi Bonaparte 1986 is revised. The material consists of the axial skeleton, the pelvic girdle, and the right femur. Patagosaurus is mainly characterised by a combination of features mainly identified on the axial skeleton, including the following: 1) cervical centra with low Elongation Index; 2) high projection of the postzygodiapophyseal lamina; 3) deep anterior pleurocoels that are sometimes compartmentalized in cervicals; 4) high projection of the neural arch and spine in dorsal vertebrae and anterior(most) caudal vertebrae; 5) deep pneumatic foramina in posterior dorsals which connect into an internal pneumatic chamber; and 6) anterior caudal vertebrae with ‘saddle’ shaped neural spines. Diagnostic features on the appendicular skeleton include: 1) a transversely wide and anteroposteriorly short femur; 2) a medial placement of the fourth trochanter on the femur; and 3) an anteroposteriorly elongated ilium with a rounded dorsal rim, with hook-shaped anterior lobe. The characters that are diagnostic for Patagosaurus are discussed, and the osteology of Patagosaurus is compared to that of Early and Middle Jurassic (eu)sauropods from both Laurasia and Gondwana.


Sauropoda, Eusauropoda, Patagosaurus, Gondwana, Middle Jurassic, Patagonia, pneumaticity

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