Episode 375 is all about Volkheimeria, a medium to small Early Jurassic sauropod that lived in what is now Patagonia.
We also interview Joshua Mathews and Anne Weerda, Joshua is a PhD candidate at Northern Illinois University, Director of Paleontology, and Vice President of Research & Operations at the Burpee Museum. Anne is the Executive Director at the Burpee Museum.
In this episode, we discuss:
- A revision of Parvicursor shows that two other alvarezsaurids, Ceratonykus & Linhenykus, may be synonyms source
- A new alvarezsaurid, Khulsanurus magnificus, was described from the Gobi Desert in Mongolia source
- According to a new study, dinosaurs probably had some color on their faces source
- The World’s most complete Triceratops is going on display at the Melbourne Museum source
- Cathedral City, California is getting 11 life-sized dinosaur sculptures along highway 111 source
- Jurassic World: Dominion is doing crossovers with the Winter Olympics source
The dinosaur of the day: Volkheimeria
- Eusauropod that lived in the Early Jurassic in what is now Patagonia, Argentina (Cañadón Asfalto Formation)
- Looks like other sauropods, with a long neck and tail, and a stocky body, and walked on all fours
- Had low, flat neural spines
- Estimated to be 29.5 ft (9 m) long
- Weighed about the same as a rhinoceros
- Type and only species is Volkheimeria chubutensis
- Described in 1979 by José Bonaparte
- Genus name means “of Volkheimer”
- Named after Wolfgang Volkheimer, a geologist and paleontologist
- Fossils found include a mostly complete pelvis and sacrum, caudal vertebrae, femur, and tibia
- Found close to Piatnitzkysaurus and Patagosaurus
- Ilium (part of the hip) was much shorter than that of Patagosaurus
- A 2017 study by Ignacio Alejandro Cerda and others looked at growth rates in sauropods, and based on histology, found Volkheimeria had rapid, sustained growth rates
- Had closely spaced growth marks, which goes with its relatively small size
- Other dinosaurs that lived around the same time and place include the sauropod Patagosaurus, and the megalosauroids Condorraptor and Piatnitzkysaurus
Fun Fact: Contrary to the popular expression penguins aren’t at the North OR South Pole, but occasionally other dinosaurs reach them.
Our book 50 Dinosaur Tales is available now! Get the collection of dinosaur stories and facts from recent discoveries by going to bit.ly/50dinosaurtales. It’s available as an audiobook, ebook, and paperback.