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Palaeontology

Oldest giant dinosaur unearthed in Argentina

By T.K. Randall
July 10, 2018 · Comment icon 6 comments

Ingentia prima grew to around ten meters in height. Image Credit: Jorge A. Gonzalez
Researchers have discovered what is believed to be the first true giant dinosaur dating back to the Triassic.
Unearthed at the Balde de Leyes deposit in Argentina's San Juan province, the gargantuan four-legged dinosaur, which has been named Ingentia prima, roamed the planet 200 million years ago - long before famous giants such as Diplodocus first appeared on the scene.

The discovery significantly pushes back the period during which dinosaur gigantism first emerged.
"We see in Ingentia prima the origin of gigantism, the first steps so that, more than 100 million years later, sauropods of up to 70 tons could come into existence like those that lived in Patagonia," said paleontologist and study co-author Ricardo Martinez.

Its enormous size was supported by special cavities within its bones that made its skeleton lighter.

"These pneumatic cavities indicate that this new species had highly developed air sacs and a very efficient breathing system, similar to what happens in modern birds, which also helped it to keep its body cool despite its large size," said paleontologist Cecilia Apaldetti.



Source: BBC News | Comments (6)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Unfortunately 6 years ago
Nice find! Absolutely fascinating . I'm loving the name as well, 'Ingentia Prima', has a nice ring to it even though it's Latin for 'First Big' or something along those lines .
Comment icon #2 Posted by L.A.T.1961 6 years ago
One thing that's interested me about dino's is there size, why did they become so big? One of the reasons has to be competition with other Dino's but there are also problems caused by growing very large.  My thought is the climate could also be a factor. Did the Earth experience extreme weather events? High winds from tornado and hurricanes,  flooding events caused by annual monsoons in some areas of the globe driven by a warmer world.  If so being larger may have helped survive the climate at that time.  
Comment icon #3 Posted by kennp 6 years ago
im pretty sure it means HUGE COUSIN
Comment icon #4 Posted by paperdyer 6 years ago
We're putting more CO2 in the atmosphere, so watch your lizards and birds.  I wonder if this is just part of some vicious cycle.  Dinosaurs come and go.  Man comes and overloads the atmosphere with CO2.  Earth heats up.  Ice caps melt.  Humans die and Dinos come back.
Comment icon #5 Posted by L.A.T.1961 6 years ago
 That sounds like a good plot for a movie.    
Comment icon #6 Posted by Sameerr 6 years ago
That is interesting. Ingentia Prima is about 10 m long and 10 tonnes which is very small for sauropod standards but nonetheless it's a giant dinosaur known from Triassic.


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