Once Tropical Island: Dinosaur Species Discovered in Transylvania

In western Romania, researchers discover the remains of a previously unknown species of pygmy dinosaur.

Once Tropical Island: Dinosaur Species Discovered in Transylvania

In western Romania, researchers discover the remains of a previously unknown species of pygmy dinosaur. They give it the name Transylvanosaurus - after the place where it was found, Transylvania. In the Late Cretaceous the region was an island with tropical temperatures.

An international team of researchers has identified a new species of dinosaur in western Romania. The species, named after the place where it was found in Transylvania, lived about 70 million years ago and was a herbivore, as reported by the University of Tübingen. The previously unknown dwarf dinosaur was about two meters long, walked on two legs and belonged to the group of so-called rhabdodontids.

In Transylvania, these animals, like other dinosaurs there, only reached a small body size. Presumably, a limited supply of food in Europe at that time led to an adapted stature, as the researchers suspect.

Europa was a tropical archipelago during the Cretaceous Period, which began 145 million years ago and ended 66 million years ago. Transylvanosaurus platycephalus lived on one of the many islands together with other miniature dinosaurs, crocodiles, turtles and giant pterosaurs, whose wings measured up to ten meters span.

In addition to the Tübingen paleontologist Felix Augustin, scientists from the universities of Bucharest and Zurich were also involved in the study. For the Cretaceous period, the Hateg Basin in Transylvania is one of the most important sites in Europe. A total of ten dinosaur species have already been identified there.

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