Temporal range: Upper Triassic
Eodromaeus (meaning "dawn runner") is an extinct genus of basal theropod dinosaur from the Upper Triassic of Argentina. An almost complete articulated skeleton (the bones were still mostly connected) was found in 1996.
Eodromaeus has been cited by Paul Sereno as "close to the root of the dinosaurs". It is the earliest known definite theropod.
Description[change | change source]
Eodromaeus was a relatively small dinosaur, with a total length of about 1.2 metres (3.9 ft) from nose to tail, and a weight of about 5 kilograms (11 lb). The trunk was long and slender. It is unknown how fast Eodromaeus could run: about 30 kilometres per hour (19 mph) has been suggested. The animal was, like all early dinosaurs, bipedal. The forelimbs were much shorter than the hindlimbs, ending in hands with five digits. Digits IV and V were very reduced in size.
References[change | change source]
- Martinez, Ricardo N. et al 2011 A basal dinosaur from the dawn of the dinosaur era in Southwestern Pangaea. Science 331 (6014): 206–210. doi:10.1126/science.1198467. PMID 21233386. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/331/6014/206.abstract.
- Bowdler, Neil 2011. BBC News Science & Environment. "'Dawn runner casts light on birth of the dinosaurs", www.bbc.co.uk, 13-1-2011.
- Weise E, "New dog-sized dinosaur discovered", www.usatoday.com, 23-01-2011.