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PALUXYSAURUS

a synonym of Sauroposeidon from the Early Cretaceous of North America.
Pronunciation: puh-LUHK-see-SOR-us
Meaning: Paluxy lizard
Author/s: Rose (2001)
Synonyms: n/a
First Discovery: Texas, USA
Chart Position:

Paluxysaurus jonesi

For two decades the remains from a bonebed at Jones Ranch, Hood County, Texas, and copious footprints (known as Brontopodus) from Glen Rose were thought to belong to Pleurocoelus but a thorough review of this material by Peter J. Rose in 2007 prompted the naming of an all-new genus—Paluxysaurus jonesi—distinct among Early Cretaceous sauropods of North America in the shape and proportions of its limbs, and among the sauropods of everywhere else in features of its vertebrae. Apparently.

This was bad news for Texas who had adopted Pleurocoelus as their official state dinosaur in 1997 blissfully unaware that paleontologists had been trying to sink it into Maryland's Astrodon since 1903, but good news in that they had a tailor-made replacement-in-waiting. On the 19th June 2009 by a landslide margin of 7 "ayes" to 0 "nays" the designation of the Official Dinosaur of the Lone Star state was changed to Paluxysaurus jonesi at the behest of constituents at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, and the crowd went wild. Unfortunately, the euphoria didn't last long.

In 2012, re-analysis of these bones and many more from Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Texas led D'Emic and Foreman to conclude that Paluxysaurus was the same animal as Sauroposeidon and Texas found themselves in the rather embaressing position of having replaced their non-existant state dinosaur with another non-existant one.
(Bill Jones's Paluxy lizard)Etymology
Paluxysaurus is derived from "Paluxy" (the nearby town of Paluxy, Texas, and the Paluxy River, which flows through this region) and the Greek "sauros" (lizard).
The species epithet, jonesi, honors William R. (Bill) Jones, who graciously allowed the excavation of important fossils on his land for the best part of two decades.
Discovery
The fossils that were named Paluxysaurus were discovered at Jones Ranch Quarry, SMU Locality 282, in the Twin Mountains Formation of Hood County, Texas, by students from the University of Texas at Austin in the mid-1980s. Jeffrey G. Pittman worked the quarry for three field seasons from 1985 to 1987 then researchers from Southern Methodist University, the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, and Tarleton State University re-opened the quarry in 1993 and have worked it ever since.

The holotype (FWMSH 93B-10-18) was a partial skull, but hat fulls of isolated bones from at least four different individuals discovered here, plus sauropod footprints from the famous Paluxy River trackway near Glen Rose, a mere 25km from the quarry, make this one of the richest known accumulations of Early Cretaceous sauropod remains in North America. At least the holotype now belongs to Sauroposeidon.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Early Cretaceous
Stage: Aptian-Albian
Age range: 125-112 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 18.5 meters
Est. max. hip height: ?
Est. max. weight: 15 Kg
Diet: Herbivore
References
• P. Upchurch, P.M. Barrett and P. Dodson (2004) "Sauropoda" in "The Dinosauria: Second Edition".
• Peter J. Rose (2007) "A new titanosauriform sauropod (Dinosauria: Saurischia) from the Early Cretaceous of central Texas and its phylogenetic relationships".
• D'Emic, M.D. and Foreman, B.Z. (2012) "The beginning of the sauropod dinosaur hiatus in North America: insights from the Lower Cretaceous Cloverly Formation of Wyoming".
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "PALUXYSAURUS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 20th Nov 2017.
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