Eubrontes (Hitchcock, 1845) is the name of fossilised dinosaur footprints dating from the Late Triassic. They have been identified from France, Poland, Slovakia, Italy, Australia (Queensland) and the USA.
Eubrontes is the name of the footprints, identified by their shape, and not of the genus or genera that made them, which is as yet unknown. They are most famous for their discovery in the Connecticut River Valley, Massachusetts in 1802. They, among other footprints, were the first known dinosaur remains to be discovered in North America, though they were initially identified as large birds by Edward Hitchcock, a professor of Amherst College. Another major find occurred at Rocky Hill, Connecticut in 1966. Nearly 600 prints are preserved there in an area now designated Dinosaur State Park.
In early 1970s, a fiberglass cast of an Eubrontes giganteus footprint was made by Paul E. Olsen, then 14-year-old, and his friend. It was then sent to President Richard Nixon to get his support for registering the Riker Hill Fossil Site in Roseland, New Jersey as a National Natural Landmark.
A typical Eubrontes print is from 40 -50 cm wide, with three toes and evidence of a heel. It belongs to a biped that must have been over one metre high at the hip and from 5-6 metres long. E. Colbert and others supposed that a large heavy carnivore like Teratosaurus (then considered to be a dinosaur) made the track, but a possible candidate is Dilophosaurus breedorum, a large theropod related to Coelophysis, or a close relative. However no Dilophosaurus fossil material is associated with Eubrontes tracks.
Eubrontes is the state fossil of Connecticut. The type species is Eubrontes giganteus. The French footprint has been called Eubrontes veillonensis. The name means 'true thunder,' probably referring to the supposed weight of the animal impacting on the ground.
See also Edit
- Connecticut River Valley trackways
- List of Australian dinosaurs
- Edward Hitchcock
- Colbert, E., Dinosaurs, Hutchinson & Co, 1962
- Dino Land State Fossils: Eubrontes of Connecticut www.geocities.com/stegob/eubrontesconnecticut.html?200611
- Queensland Dinosaur Trackways home.alphalink.com.au/dannj/larkqury.htm