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Amphicoelias fragillimus renamed

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A new paper is now online that will shock you:


Carpenter, Kenneth. 2018. Maraapunisaurus fragillimus, n.g. (formerly Amphicoelias fragillimus), a basal rebbachisaurid from the Morrison Formation (Upper Jurassic) of Colorado. Geology of the Intermountain West 5:227–244.


Despite the missing nature of AMNH 5777, Kenneth Carpenter has erected Maraapunisaurus for Amphicoelias fragillimus and reclassified the taxon as a rebbachisaurid based on comparisons of Cope's figures with illustrations of other rebbachisaurid vertebrae. He's also revised the size estimate for fragillimus to 99 feet because Woodruff and Foster (2014) consider a 190 foot long Maraapunisaurus biologically impossible; even with this revised length, Maraapunisaurus was still a huge sauropod compared to other rebbachisaurids. This new size estimate makes sense because Diplodocus hallorum was initially thought to be 140-150 feet long before later research revised the length of D. hallorum to 110 feet, but also because also because of a lack of research into the biological limits of gigantism in sauropods. Given the discovery of the rather early dicraeosaurid Lingwulong, the rebbachisaurid placement of Maraapunisaurus shortens the ghost lineage of rebbachisaurids created by what is known about early diplodocoid evolution in the Jurassic.


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