The Discovery of Paralititan Stomeri - A Giant Sauropod Essay

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The Discovery of Paralititan Stomeri - A Giant Sauropod

In the scientific article “A giant sauropod dinosaur from an upper Cretaceous mangrove deposit in Egypt,” by Joshua Smith, Matthew Lamanna, Kenneth Lacovara, and Peter Dodson it is indicated that a giant sauropod named Paralititan Stomeri was discovered in a desert area in western Egypt in 2001. The skeleton was dated back to ninety to one hundred million years ago, which is the late Cretaceous period. Paralititan is a sauropod, which is thought to be the second largest that has ever lived. A partial skeleton of this enormous sauropod was found. What was found is seen when the authors write, “The specimen consists largely of vertebrae, pectoral girdle, and forelimb elements” (Dodson, Lacovara, Lamanna, and Smith). The largest bone found was a 1.69 meter long humerus, which is an upper arm bone. This was the first find in the area since 1935.

The area where the bones were found is called Egypt’s Bahariya Oasis. The last time this site was explored was when a German, named Ernst Stromer, found four smaller dinosaur species. Stromer believed that the fossils he found came from a period in the Upper Cretaceous around ninety three to ninety nine million years ago. Included in stromer’s findings were fish, turtles, plesiosaurs, squamates, crocodyliforms, and four dinosaurs: the theropods Spinosaurus, Carcharodontosaurus, and Bahariasaurus, and the sauropod Aegyptosaurus (Dodson, Lacovara, Lamanna, and Smith).

Unfortunately most of these fossils were destroyed in 1944 when the Allied forces bombed Munich during World War II.

The period around ninety to one hundred million years ago is characterized by a very small variation in temperature between the north and south ...

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... in that area. The discovery of the Paralititan supports the theory that the two continents were attached through the late Cretaceous, because it is closely related to the Argentinosaurus. This discovery is exciting because it is another very large sauropod and, because it helps support the theory that Africa and South America were still connected through the late Cretaceous period.


Dodson, Peter, Kenneth Lacovara, Matthew Lamanna, and
Joshua Smith. “A giant sauropod dinosaur from an
Upper Creataceous mangrove deposit in Egypt”.
Science. Washington: June1, 2001. Vo. 292, Iss.

Roach, John. “’Tidal Giant’ Roamed Coastal Swamps of
Ancient Africa”. National Geographic News. 2001.

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