Amargasaurus cazaui

Sean Closson

Wiscasset, United States

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Artist's Description

I present Amargasaurus cazaui, (meaning “La Amarga lizard”) a sauropod that roamed in what is now Argentina during the Early Cretaceous period, about 129.4 to 122.46 million years ago. Though it was not the larges sauropod in environment, or it’s genera within the overall family (Dicraeosauridae), it was definitely one of the weirdest dinosaurs ever discovered.

Amargasaurus distinguished itself from other Sauropods by sporting 2 rows of bony spines that ran along it’s neck, scientists have speculated as to the purpose of this adaptation by proposing everything from them supporting body heat regulating sails, being percussive instruments, a means of defense, and a way to attract mates and recognize their species. The latter is most likely part of their purpose, as animals will most usually grow exaggerated display structures because those structures are attractive to potential mates and successive generations showing the same attraction will produce offspring with larger or more developed structures.

Amargasaurus had a relatively short neck when compared to other sauropods in it’s family, and was pretty small when comparing them to giants like Diplodocus, measuring from around 30 to 33 feet upon reaching adulthood and weighing in at just under 3 tons. Despite it’s diminished stature it did leave a big impression in the field of paleontology, as it is both weird and the only known skeleton found was nearly complete, including a partial skull.

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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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