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Skeletal reconstruction of Muttaburrasaurus in the Queensland Museum in Australia

Skeleton reconstruction of Muttaburrasaurus in the Queensland Museum in Australia

Temporal occurrence
Lower Cretaceous ( Albium )
112.9 to 100.5 million years
Dinosaur (dinosauria)
Pelvic dinosaur (Ornithischia)
Scientific name
Bartholomai & Molnar , 1981
  • Muttaburrasaurus langdoni

Muttaburrasaurus is a genus of ornithopod dinosaurs (Ornithopoda) from the Iguanodontia group from the Lower Cretaceous of Australia . The only species of this genus, the type species M. langdoni , was first described in 1981 by Alan Bartholomai and Ralph Molnar .


Skull of Muttaburrasaurus in the Australia Museum in Sydney

Muttaburrasaurus was a herbivore about seven meters long that probably moved both quadruped (four-legged) and biped (two-legged). The skull shows an enlarged, upwardly curved snout, which may have been used to make sounds or for display. The beak was toothless, unlike Iguanodon the molars were not suitable for chewing. The hand had five fingers; whether a thumb sting was present, as in Iguanodon or Ouranosaurus , is not known because of the incomplete fossil record .


Originally Muttaburrasaurus was placed in the Iguanodontidae . A revision of this group in 1990 by the paleontologists David Norman and David Weishampel confirmed that the genus belonged to the Iguanodontia, but placed them outside the Iguanodontidae. The exact relationship ( systematics ) of the genus is still unclear, but it could be closely related to Tenontosaurus and Zalmoxes .

Discovery and naming

Skeleton reconstruction at the Queensland Museum

Muttaburrasaurus was discovered in 1963 on the Thompson River in the Australian state of Queensland near Muttaburra and named after this city. The specific epithet langdoni honors Doug Langdon, a rancher who discovered the fossils. Lithostratigraphically , the fossils come from marine sediments of the Mackunda Formation , which were deposited in the Albium . It is believed that the animal's carcass ( holotype QM F6140) was washed into the sea before it was covered by sediment. A severely deformed skull known as the "Dunluce Skull" was discovered in 1987 between Hughenden and Richmond . Fragments of a third skull come from Lona , also near Hughenden. In addition to these finds, some teeth are known to have been found south of Lightning Ridge in northwest New South Wales . It is the most fully preserved dinosaur in Australia after Minmi .


further reading

  • Alan Bartholomai, Ralph E. Molnar: Muttaburrasaurus, a new iguanodontid (Ornithischia: Ornithopoda) dinosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of Queensland. In: Memoirs of the Queensland Museum. Vol. 20, No. 2, 1981, ISSN  0079-8835 , pp. 319-349.

Web links

Commons : Category "Muttaburrasaurus"  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Gregory S. Paul : The Princeton Field Guide To Dinosaurs. Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ et al. 2010, ISBN 978-0-691-13720-9 , p. 286, online ( memento of the original from July 13, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  2. David B. Norman : Basal Iguanodontia. In: David B. Weishampel , Peter Dodson , Halszka Osmólska (eds.): The Dinosauria . 2nd edition. University of California Press, Berkeley CA et al. 2004, ISBN 0-520-24209-2 , pp. 413-437, here pp. 432-434.
  3. a b The Paleobiology Database