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ZIZHONGOSAURUS

a plant-eating gravisaurian sauropod dinosaur from the Middle Jurassic of China.
Pronunciation: DZUH-JOON-go-SOR-us
Meaning: Zizhong (County) lizard
Author/s: Dong et al. (1983)
Synonyms: None known
First Discovery: Zizhong, China
Chart Position: 245

Zizhongosaurus chuanchengensis

After being misspelled Zishongosaurus just a couple of lines into its official 1983 description by Zhiming Dong, Zizhongosaurus managed to avoid further embarrassment by cunningly getting itself ignored by almost all paleontologists since then. That wasn't too hard because its remains aren't the best, but they're not the worst either, and other dinosaurs have been afforded far more attention on the strength of less.

Zizhongosaurus is based on a partial back vertebra with a distinct spine that flares out into a paddle towards the end, the partial shaft of an upper arm, and a hip bone, probably (though not certainly) all from the same individual, that were described as the property of a "small primitive sauropod" by Dong who provisionally referred it to Cetiosaurinae—a group of chunky sauropods known as "whale lizards". For the record; cetiosaurids are nothing like whales and Zizhongosaurus is not much like any known cetiosaurid. Later research found it to be a member of Vulcanodontidae, or perhaps Shunosaurinae.

A second species—Zizhongosaurus huangshibanensis—was mentioned by Li Kui way back in 1999, but remains naked (in a literary sense) because it has yet to be officially described.
(Zizhong lizard from Chuancheng)Etymology
Zizhongosaurus is derived from "Zizhong" (for Zizhong County) and the Greek "saurus" (lizard). The species epithet, chuanchengensis, is derived from "Chuancheng" (a town known to locals as "Boat City" because of its location on the roughly boat-shaped Mount Yuezhongloushan) and the Latin "ensis" (from).
Discovery
The remains of Zizhongosaurus were discovered in the Xintiangou Formation (previously known as the "Lianggaoshan" Formation), 15-20 meters above the Daanzhai Member of the Ziliujing Formation, at Luochuanjing, Zizhong County, Sichuan Province, China.
The holotype (V9067.1-3) includes a partial dorsal (back) vertebra, a partial right humerus (upper arm bone), a pubis (hip bone), and several other fragments.
Estimations
Timeline:
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Middle Jurassic
Stage: Aalenian
Age range: 176-171 mya
Stats:
Est. max. length: 9 meters
Est. max. hip height: ?
Est. max. weight: 3 tons
Diet: Herbivore
Family Tree:
Dinosauria
Saurischia
Sauropodomorpha
Sauropoda
Gravisauria
Vulcanodontidae?
Zizhongosaurus
chuanchengensis
References
• Zhiming Dong, Shiwu Zhou, Yihong Zhang (1983) "Dinosaurs from the Jurassic of Sichuan".
• K. Li, Y. Zhang, K. Ca (1999) "The Characteristics of the Composition of the Trace Elements in Jurassic Dinosaur Bones and Red Beds in Sichuan Basin".
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "ZIZHONGOSAURUS :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 27th May 2017.
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