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ARALOSAURUS

a herbivorous lambeosaurine hadrosaurid dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Kazakhstan.
aralosaurus © dinochecker
Pronunciation: AR-a-lo-SOR-us
Meaning: Aral Sea Lizard
Author/s: Rozhdestvensky (1968)
Synonyms: None known
First Discovery: Qyzylorda, Kazakhstan
Chart Position: 172

Aralosaurus tuberiferus

Russian paleontologists found what would come to be known as Aralosaurus on the shores of a receding Aral sea in 1957, but since then its remains have receded somewhat too. It was initially assigned several vertebrae, bones from the forearms and fragments of a leg and foot. Unfortunately, they're long lost, and the only fossil it can seriously lay claim to is a partial skull that's broad at the back and built to anchor massive muscles to power its chewing tools; jaws packed with hundreds of small teeth set in 30 or more interlocking banks to form huge dental batteries.

Once thought to be a Gryposaurus-like saurolophine hadrosaurid because of an arch on its snout formed by a pair of raised nasal bones, later research led Pascal Godefroit to conclude that Aralosaurus is actually the most basal lambeosaurine. In 2013, Prieto-Márquez nominated it to co-anchor a lambeosaurine tribe known as Aralosaurini, along with Canardia garonnensis, because they both sport a similar peak on the topside-rear of the bony crest which adorns their broad snout.
Etymology
Aralosaurus is derived from "Aral" (for the Aral Sea) and the Greek "sauros" (lizard). The Aral Sea is actually a huge inland lake in central Kazazhstan which was once top four in the world, size-wise, at almost 68,000 km square, but it's been gradually shrinking since the 1960's when the Soviet Union began redirecting feeder rivers and messing with irrigation. The species epithet, tuberiferus, means "bearing a tuber" because of the bony arch (or tubercle) on its snout.
Discovery
The remains of Aralosaurus were discovered at "Sakh-Sakh" in the Bostobe Formation (previously the Beleutinsk Formation or Beleutinskaya Svita), Qyzylorda, central Kazakhstan, in 1957.
The Holotype (No. 2229/1) is an incomplete skull.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Late Cretaceous
Stage: Santonian-Campanian
Age range: 86-71 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 8 meters
Est. max. hip height: 2.6 meters
Est. max. weight: 3 tons
Diet: Herbivore
aralosaurus-size
References
• A. K. Rozhdestvenskiy (1968) "The Hadrosaurs of Kazakhstan". Page 97–141 in Tatarinov et al. (eds.) "Upper Paleozoic and Mesozoic Amphibians and Reptiles". Akademia Nauk S.S.S.R., Moscow.
• Pascal Godefroit, V. Alifanov, Y. Bolotsky (2004) "A re-appraisal of Aralosaurus tuberiferus (Dinosauria, Hadrosauridae) from the Late Cretaceous of Kazakhstan".
• Prieto-Márquez A, Dalla Vecchia F.M, Gaete R, and Galobart À. (2013) "Diversity, Relationships, and Biogeography of the Lambeosaurine Dinosaurs from the European Archipelago, with Description of the New Aralosaurin Canardia garonnensis".
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "ARALOSAURUS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 22nd Sep 2017.
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