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Episode 329: The Lizard of Oz


    Episode 329 is all about Ozraptor, a uncommon Jurassic theropod from Australia.

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    On this episode, we focus on:


    • A brand new troodontid, Tamarro, was described from Spain supply
    • A gastrolith might inform the story of a big herbivore migrating about 600 miles supply
    • The dig website of Magyarosaurus in Romania was discovered utilizing a 100+ 12 months previous map supply
    • In China, paleontologists lately discovered the world’s smallest stegosaur footprint supply
    • Tristan Otto, the T. Rex skeleton, is staying on the Pure Historical past Museum of Copenhagen till the tip of 2021 supply
    • The Youngsters’s Museum of Indianapolis has a Sue meets Bucky exhibit from now till July 25 supply

    The dinosaur of the day: Ozraptor

    • Abelisauroid theropod that lived within the Center Jurassic in what’s now Australia (Colalura Sandstone)
    • Not a dromaeosaurid (often known as raptors)
    • In all probability typical theropod physique, walked on two legs, carnivorous
    • Holotype is UWA 82469 and consists of the decrease finish of a left tibia (shin bone)
    • Fossil is about 3 in (8 cm) lengthy and 1.6 in (4 cm) large, on the decrease finish
    • Estimate the complete shin bone was about 7 to eight in (17 to twenty cm) lengthy
    • Estimated to be about 6.6 ft (2 m) lengthy
    • Physique size estimated by evaluating related bones in different theropods, like Allosaurus
    • Fossil present in 1967 by 4 12-year-old Scotch School schoolboys (Steven Hincliffe, Peter Peebles, Robert Coldwell and Trevor Robinson) close to the coastal metropolis Geraldton. They have been there to gather fossils
    • Discovered on the Bringo Railway Slicing website
    • Boys confirmed the fossil to Rex Prider, a professor on the College of Western Australia
    • Rex Prider despatched a forged (nonetheless embedded in matrix) to researchers on the Pure Historical past Museum in London, and Alan Charig thought it could be a turtle
    • Fossil had been worn away at elements
    • John Lengthy and Ralph Molnar named and described it as Ozraptor in 1998. Lengthy had the fossil ready when he grew to become curator of vertebrate paleontology on the Western Australian Museum
    • Lengthy was appointed in 1989 and began a overview of Mesozoic vertebrates of Western Australia, which meant learning all materials within the museum’s collections
    • After preparation they stated it was the shin bone of a theropod
    • Apparently the fossil was encased in rock and Lengthy pried it aside with a hammer and chisel
    • Sort and solely species is Ozraptor subotaii
    • Genus title means “Australian thief”
    • Oz is the colloquial time period for Australia
    • From the paper: “One might subsequently (metaphorically) consider Ozraptor as ‘the lizard of Oz’.”
    • Species title is in honor of the fictional character, Subotai, a quick operating thief and archer from the film Conan the Barbarian
    • Species title as a result of Lengthy stated the oblong melancholy and the morphology of the shin bone in all probability means it was an agile dinosaur
    • Unique 1998 paper spent loads of time overlaying what made the fossil distinctive sufficient to be its personal genus, though it’s primarily based on a single incomplete bone
    • Distinct options: melancholy the place the ankle bone (astragalus) is connected, and it’s nearly sq. in form (often triangular), and the medial malleolus was weakly developed (bony bump on the interior facet of the ankle)
    • Unique paper stated that the form of theropod ankle bones could be distinct sufficient to point out completely different genera
    • Additionally, since that is the primary recognized Australia Jurassic theropod, it’s unlikely to be from one thing already recognized (carefully recognized theropod on the time was Cryolophosaurus, present in Antarctica)
    • Paper additionally stated the theropod Kakuru was named primarily based a part of a proper tibia, with a singular ankle (astragalar) aspect
    • Additionally stated this form may very well be used to acknowledge main teams of theropods, so within the case of Kakuru it signifies a but unknown group of theropods
    • So the identical goes for Ozraptor
    • Plenty of comparisons to different theropods (ankle bone shapes and tibial morphology)
    • For instance, theropods with extra triangular form embody Coelophysis and Sinraptor
    • Discovered Ozraptor to be distinctive in comparison with Jurassic theropods, although discovered some similarities with some Cretaceous theropods
    • First dinosaur formally named from Western Australia, aside from tracks
    • First Jurassic theropod bone from Australia
    • Dinosaur tracks had been present in Queensland beforehand, together with not less than one monitor from a small theropod, considered across the similar dimension as Ozraptor
    • On the time Ozraptor was named, just about all dinosaur bones present in Australia had been from the Cretaceous, plus one partial skeleton of the sauropod Rhoetosaurus present in southern Queensland that was from the Jurassic, and one possible sauropod caudal vertebra additionally discovered close to Geraldton (Lengthy reported it in 1992)
    • Fossil discovered on the similar website because the sauropod caudal vertebra
    • Additionally discovered fossilized wooden, bivalves, and plesiosaur bones
    • Initially labeled as Theropoda incertae sedis
    • In 2004, Oliver Rauhut discovered Ozraptor to be the oldest recognized abelisauroid, primarily based on a overview of post-cranial materials of a small theropod from Tanzania, in addition to different theropods, together with abelisauroids and ceratosaurs
    • Abelisaur fossils from Tanzania have been discovered to have related traits to Ozraptor (just like the depressed characteristic)

    Enjoyable Reality:
    Therizinosaurs have been the true “sloths of the Cretaceous.”


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