PDA

View Full Version : Ledumahadi mafube: South Africa's new jurassic giant



sharpiefan
09-28-2018, 12:45 PM
A new species of a giant dinosaur has been found in South Africa's Free State Province. The plant-eating dinosaur, named Ledumahadi mafube, weighed 12 tons and stood about four meters high at the hips. Ledumahadi mafube was the largest land animal alive on Earth when it lived, nearly 200 million years ago. It was roughly double the size of a large African elephant.

A team of international scientists, led by University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) palaeontologist Professor Jonah Choiniere, described the new species in the journal Current Biology today.

The dinosaur's name is Sesotho for "a giant thunderclap at dawn" (Sesotho is one of South Africa's 11 official languages and an indigenous language in the area where the dinosaur was found).

"The name reflects the great size of the animal as well as the fact that its lineage appeared at the origins of sauropod dinosaurs," said Choiniere. "It honours both the recent and ancient heritage of southern Africa."

Ledumahadi mafube is one of the closest relatives of sauropod dinosaurs. Sauropods, weighing up to 60 tonnes, include well-known species like Brontosaurus. All sauropods ate plants and stood on four legs, with a posture like modern elephants. Ledumahadi evolved its giant size independently from sauropods, and although it stood on four legs, its forelimbs would have been more crouched. This caused the scientific team to consider Ledumahadi an evolutionary "experiment" with giant body size.


Ledumahadi mafube: South Africa's new jurassic giant (LINK) (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/09/180927123017.htm)


#include [ std-disclaimer ]