Chinese paleontologists announced Sunday that they have discovered the Largest dinosaur fossil from the Jurassic in the country in the northwest of the Xinjiang region. The Fossil remains show they belonged to a 35 meter long herbivorous sauropod dinosaur and weighing about 30 tons, says Professor Sun Ge, leader of the expedition team that made the discovery and deputy executive director of the China Paleontology Research Society.
He said it in a press conference in Shanshan county, where the fossil was found, which was discovered in a stratum of the middle period of the Jurassic, A few ago 165 million years.
- Dinosaur fossil
Prior to this, the largest Jurassic dinosaur fossil discovered in China had less than 30 meters long. Sun says paleontologists continue digging in hopes of find a complete skeleton.
Says team members have dug up the fossil of a tooth which apparently belongs to a camosaurus close to the herbivorous dinosaur fossil. "We hope that future excavations will help us find evidence that suggests the causes of the death of this huge creature.", He says.
The team is made up of experts from Jilin University, Shenyang Normal University and Xinjiang Geological Institute and started the expedition in Shanshan in October of last year.
This region is where Chinese and German experts unearthed the largest group of fossilized dinosaur footprintsor in China in 2008. The tracks were left by small-sized Jurassic fleshy animals. Many of the prints were from three-toed feet and belong to big, bulging feet with sharp claws.
- Tooth fossil found in China
Professor Dong Zhiming, one of the discoverers of the Shanshanosaurus, a kind of carnivorous lizard, said the new discovery shows that the Turpan Account had more favorable conditions for the development of life than other regions southwest of Sichuan and Yunnan provinces for herbivorous sauropods at late Jurassic period.
The expedition team has discovered more than 20 fossil beds in Shanshan and unearthed more than 100 fossils of turtle species.
Dong says the findings suggest that the dry Turpan Basin it could have had lakes and been covered in leafy plants during the Jurassic period, which would have been enough to satisfy the appetite of herbivorous dinosaurs.
Li Tingdong, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, says the dinosaur fossil research in Shanshan yields important clues for investigate the climate and stratum of the Jurassic, and give clues to find oil deposits in the region.
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