Abrosaurus Ouyang, 1989
Abrosaurus Ouyang, 1989 "delicate (skull) lizard" [xiulong]*
AB-ro-SAWR-us (for Gr. habros "delicate, light" + Gr. sauros
"lizard") (m) referring to the very light construction of the skull, characterized by extremely
large openings (elliptical-shaped external nares, triangular-shaped antorbital fenestrae,
orbits, lateral temporal fenestrae) separated by very narrow bone structures.
Abrosaurus is a relatively modest-sized camarasaurid-type sauropod (probably about 7-9 m
(25-30 ft) long); with a relatively short neck consisting of 13 cervical vertebrae
with centra about 1.3 times the length of the dorsal centra. Neural spines simple
and relatively low on cervicals, but slightly forked on anterior and posterior dorsals;
dorsal centra platycoelous or weakly amphicoelous. Skull is about 46 cm long;
the mandible is long and thin; teeth are comparatively small and spatulate in shape.
Forelimbs 3/4 the length of hindlimbs. Known from a nearly complete skull
(Holotype: ZDM 5038 (Zigong Dinosaur Museum)), parts of a skeleton, and a second skull,
found in the Middle Jurassic Lower Shaximiao Formation, Dashanpu, Zigong County,
Sichuan Province, southern China.
Type Species: Abrosaurus dongpoensis [doong-paw-EN-sis] Ouyang 1989: "for Dongpo":
named for Su Dongpo, pen name of Su Shi (1036-1101 AD), famous Song Dynasty writer
and poet born in Sichuan Province where the fossils were found. NOTE:
a description of Abrosaurus published in 1996 (Zhang & Chen 1996) gave the type species
as Abrosaurus gigantorhinus ["giant snout"], based on an unpublished dissertation
by Ouyang in 1986; the Ouyang's official description of Abrosaurus published in 1989
in the Zigong Dinosaur Museum Newsletter (1989 (2)) made the type species A. dongpoensis.
Sauropoda ?Camarasauridae Middle Jurassic China [added 8/2000]
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