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1 September 2009 New Sauropod Trackways from the Middle Jurassic of Portugal
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The Galinha tracksite reveals a sequence of Bajocian—Bathonian limestones belonging to the Serra de Aire Formation (West-Central Portugal) and is one of the few sites in the world where Middle Jurassic sauropod dinosaur tracks can be found. This tracksite is characterised by the presence of long, wide gauge sauropod trackways, the Middle Jurassic age of which suggests these dinosaurs were more widely distributed over time than previously thought. Two trackways contain unique pes and manus prints with morphologies that allow a new sauropod ichnotaxon to be described: Polyonyx gomesi igen, et isp. nov. On the basis of different manus/pes prints and trackway features, the proposal is made to subdivide Sauropodomorpha ichno-morphotypes into five groups: Tetrasauropus-like, Otozoum-like, Breviparopus/Parabrontopodus-like; Brontopodus-like, and Polyonyx-like. Polyonyx gomesi igen, et isp. nov. is thought to represent a non-neosauropod eusauropod, with a well developed manus digit I. The posterior orientation of this digit print suggests they were made by a eusauropod dinosaur with a posteriorly rotated pollex. The manus print morphologies observed in two trackways suggest a stage of manus structure intermediate between the primitive non-tubular sauropod manus and the tubular metacarpal arrangement characteristic of more derived sauropods. The low heteropody (manus:pes area ratio 1:2) of the trackway renders it possible they could have been made by eusauropods such as Turiasaurus riodevensis, which has a similar manus:pes area ratio. The Polyonyx igen. nov. trackway was made by non-neosauropod eusauropod, and suggests that wide gauge sauropod trackways were not exclusively made by Titanosauriformes.

Vanda F. Santos, José J. Moratalla, and Rafael Royo-Torres "New Sauropod Trackways from the Middle Jurassic of Portugal," Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 54(3), 409-422, (1 September 2009).
Received: 16 July 2008; Accepted: 1 March 2009; Published: 1 September 2009

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