A dinosaur twice the size of a London bus has been identified from remains discovered in Europe’s Pyrenees mountain range, scientists have revealed.
Named Abditosaurus kuehnei, the 70 million-year-old skeleton hails from the Titanosaur family a herbivorous group of dinosaurs. The find is considered to be the largest of its species found in the area.
Researchers detailed their discovery in the Journal Nature Ecology & Evolution, estimating the size of the dinosaur to be 17.5 metres in length and weighing in at a mammoth 14 tonnes.
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Paleontologist at the Institut Català de Paleontologia in Sabadell, Spain, Bernat Vila said the large size of the dinosaur surprised researchers as animals from similar regions are typically smaller in stature.
“Titanosaurs from the Upper Cretaceous of Europe tend to be small or medium-sized due to their evolution in insular conditions,” he said.
“That’s why we were astonished by the large dimensions of this specimen.”
The titanosaurs were the last surviving group of long-necked sauropods and are among the largest land animals known to have ever existed.
The discovery of the gargantuan Titanosaur is not the only fossil to wow the paleontology community. In December 2021, scientists discovered an unprecedented fossil of a baby dinosaur that has provided greater insight into the link between dinosaurs and birds.
The 70 million-year-old fossil, still curled up perfectly inside its egg, is the embryonic skeleton of an oviraptorid dinosaur. The Chinese museum which is housing the incredibly rare fossil have nicknamed the dinosaur “Baby Yingliang”. The fossil was found in China’s Jiangxi province.
University of Calgary Associate professor in the department of geoscience, Darla Zelenitsky told CNN that the fossil was “an amazing specimen”.
“I have been working on dinosaur eggs for 25 years and have yet to see anything like it,” she said.
“Up until now, little has been known of what was going on inside a dinosaur’s egg prior to hatching, as there are so few embryonic skeletons, particularly those that are complete and preserved in a life pose.”