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Breviparopus taghbaloutensis is the name given to an ichnogenus of dinosaur, believed to be a form of sauropod. As an ichnogenus, it is known only by (and named for) a series of fossil tracks, or ichnites, found in the Atlas Mountains of present-day Morocco. At the time, this area would have been part of the Gondwana supercontinent The tracks measured 115 cm in length by 50 cm in width (approximately 45 by 17 inches), and date to the Jurassic period (approximately 160-175 million years ago). They were first described by Dutuit and Ouazzou in 1980.1 The size, weight, and even family tree is unknown, but a great deal of speculation has arisen about this animal. Estimates range as high as 48 meters (157 feet) in length and 55 metric tonnes (60 tons) in weight. If accurate, these dimensions would make Breviparopus a contender as the largest dinosaur to have walked the Earth. Since no fossils have been found, it is impossible to substantiate these figures, nor is it even possible to say whether this mysterious sauropod was a diplodocid, titanosaur, or brachiosaur. All that can be said for certain, according to Michel Monbaron, et al., is that the footprint of this creature is quite distinct from that of Atlasaurus.2 It is also worth noting that the bone fossil record from the Middle Jurassic, according to C.A. Meyer is rather more incomplete than the fossil record of dinosaur tracks.3

See also (other massive sauropods)Edit

SourcesEdit


Dinosaur State Park (Rocky Hill, CT) - close-up

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