Episode 361 is all about Fabrosaurus, a very early ornithischian dinosaur that lived in what is now Lesotho.
We also interview Edward Guimont, an assistant professor of world history at Bristol Community College who has studied how dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals are connected through myths, legends, colonialism, and cryptozoology. Follow his work on twitter @edward_guimont
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In this episode, we discuss:
- A new site in Patagonia, Argentina includes the brand new sauropod Menucocelsior source
- Pops the ceratopsian in Weld County, Colorado might not be a Triceratops after all source
- Dickinson Museum Center’s Badlands Dinosaur Museum in North Dakota is getting a tyrannosaur skeleton source
- The North Dakota Heritage Center & State Museum has updated its juvenile mummified Edmontosaurus specimen source
- Podokesaurus is one step closer to becoming the state dinosaur of Massachusetts source
The dinosaur of the day: Fabrosaurus
- Basal ornithischian dinosaur that lived in the Late Triassic / Early Jurassic in what is now Lesotho (Elliot Formation)
- Walked on two legs, had a long body and a short head and short arms
- Looked a lot like Lesothosaurus (may be the same)
- Some scientists think Fabrosaurus specimens represent individual variations of Lesothosaurus
- Lesothosaurus was about 3 ft (1 m) long
- Type species is Fabrosaurus australis
- Described in 1964 by Léonard Ginsburg
- Genus name means “Fabre’s lizard”
- Name in honor of Jean Fabre, a geologist and one of Ginsburg’s colleagues on the expedition where the found the fossil
- Species name refers to the fossil being found in the southern part of the Elliot Formation (means “southern” in Latin)
- Holotype was a partial jawbone (mandible) with three teeth
- More fossils found later, including two crushed skulls, vertebrae, ribs, and limb bones
- Ginsburg described the holotype as thin and gracile, and the teeth as straight and triangular in profile
- Said the teeth were Ornithischian teeth, similar to Scelidosaurus harrisonii
- Described as a “dinosaur of a small size, with single-rooted teeth possessing long vertical roots”
- Originally said it was a scelidosaurid
- More ornithischian fossils later found, and later scientists found it had too many features in common with other species, and Fabrosaurus was a nomen dubium
- Richard Thulborn in 1992 said Fabrosaurus and Lesothosaurus were synonymous
- Richard Butler in 2005 reviewed ornithischians from the Elliot Formation and said Fabrosaurus was “based upon a single undiagnostic dentary” and considered it a nomen dubium
Fun Fact: There are over 50 named species of sauropods in Patagonia alone.
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