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Europasaurus holgeri
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The sensational finds were made eight years ago: in September 1998 Holger Luedtke, a hobby palaeontologist came across teeth and other remains of a herbivorous dinosaur in the Langenberg quarry near Oker on the northern edge of the Harz Mountains in North Germany. The animal was provisionally christened 'Hanna', with Lower Saxony's premier Christian Wulff in attendance as its 'godfather'.'Hanna' is now being given a new scientific name: in honour of its discoverer it is to be called 'Europasaurus holgeri'.

An international team of scientists have excavated and preserved more than 1000 dinosaur fossils in the quarry since 1998 at the invitation of the 'Association for the Promotion of Palaeontology in Lower Saxony'. Because of the small size of the fossils they originally assumed that they had come upon a group of young dinosaurs. The scientific description of the new island dinosaur species, which is unique worldwide, was directed by Dr. Octávio Mateus of the Museo da Lourinha in Portugal. The palaeontologist Thomas Laven made a detailed study of 'Hanna's' skull: it is the only skull of a sauropod dinosaur to be hitherto found in Europe. Thomas Laven made sketches reconstructing the appearance of the animal, on the basis of which life-size models of the mini-dinosaur have now been made. They can be seen in the Münchehagen dinosaur park (http://www.dino-park.de/).

The quarry in the Harz has turned out in the meantime to be a veritable El Dorado of dinosaurs – with spectacular fossil finds of flying dinosaurs, crocodiles and tortoises. Even the footprints of dangerous carnivorous dinosaurs were found on the steep sides of the quarry. The excavation site is thus one of the few places worldwide in which the bones and the footprints of dinosaurs occur together – a veritable 'Jurassic Harz' which would have been Steven Spielberg's dream.

Source : University of Bonn


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L

Posts: 131433
Date:
German Micro Sauropods
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A new species of mini-dinosaur has been unearthed in a quarry at Oker, Germany.
The creature was of the sauropod type - that group of long-necked, four-footed herbivores that were the largest of all the dinosaurs.
But at just 1.7 to 6.2metres in length, this animal was considerably smaller than its huge cousins.
It is thought that the Jurassic species evolved its small form in response to limited food resources on an island.
The species has been given the formal classification Europasaurus holgeri, or "Holger's reptile from Europe". The name honours Holger Luedtke, a self-taught palaeontologist who found the first bones in 1998.
In height terms, an adult E. holgeri would have been about the size of a horse at the shoulder.
The fossils were found in Late Jurassic carbonate rock (about 150 million years old). At this period in Earth's history, much of what is now central Europe was under water.

oker
Latitude 51°50'46.33"N Longitude 10°30'12.01"E

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