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GOBISAURUS

a plant-eating ankylosaurid dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous of China.
Pronunciation: go-bee-SOR-us
Meaning: Gobi lizard
Author/s: Vickaryous et al. (2001)
Synonyms: None known
First Discovery: Inner Mongolia, China
Chart Position: 395

Gobisaurus domoculus

Discovered in 1960 in the same area as Chilantaisaurus, the remains that would eventually become Gobisaurus were ignored for decades until they resurfaced during a travelling exhibit as part of the "Sino-Canadian Dinosaur Project" between 1990 and 1997 when the critter was affectionately, but unofficially, referred to as... "Gobisaurus".

Officially named in 2001, Gobisaurus shared its Early Cretaceous home with Shamosaurus, which also means "Gobi lizard" ("shamo" is an old Mongolian name for Gobi). The two are close relatives within Ankylosauridae—the lumbering, low-slung, armoured batallion of dinosaurs—but they lived some five million years apart and differ in skulls features, including the length of their upper jaw tooth row (25% of total skull length in the former, compared to 50% in the latter).
Etymology
Gobisaurus is derived from "Gobi" (for the Gobi Desert where it was found) and the Greek "sauros" (lizard). The species epithet, domocolus, is derived from the Latin "domo" (to subjugate, subdue, tame) and "oculus" (the eye), which loosely means "hidden from sight" and refers to the forty one years it was overlooked for an official description. Funnily enough, "Domocolus" can also mean "small house"... but in this case it doesn't.
Discovery
The remains of Gobisaurus were discovered in the Ulansuhai (aka Suhongtu) Formation, approximately 60 km north of Chilantai (Jilantai) on the east side of Chilantai Salt Lake, Maortu, Alashan Desert, Nei Mongol Zizhique (Inner Mongolia), China, by Sino-Soviet Expeditions between 1959-1960.
The holotype (IVPP V12563) is a virtually complete skeleton, but only the skull—46cm in length and 45cm across—has been described thus far.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Early Cretaceous
Stage: Turonian
Age range: 94-89 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 5 meters
Est. max. hip height: ?
Est. max. weight: 800 Kg
Diet: Herbivore
References
• Matthew K. Vickaryous, Anthony P. Russell, Philip J. Currie, and Xi-Jin Zhao (2001) "A new ankylosaurid (Dinosauria: Ankylosauria) from the Lower Cretaceous of China, with comments on ankylosaurian relationships".
• M.K. Vickaryous, T. Maryańska and D.B. Weishampel (2004) "Ankylosauria" in Weishampel, Dodson and Osmólska (eds.) "The Dinosauria: Second Edition".
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "GOBISAURUS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 25th Mar 2017.
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