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Transylvania Dinosaur Dwarfs: More Evidence Found

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posted on May, 3 2010 @ 12:48 PM
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One of my favorite stories to cover over the years at Discovery concerns the Transylvania dwarf dinosaurs. To recap, in 1895, the sister of an eccentric palaeontologist called Franz Baron Nopcsa discovered small dinosaur bones on their family estate in Transylvania. Nopcsa interpreted these as being the remains of dwarfed animals that had once lived on an island.

Nearly everyone thought he was nuts.

Science, however, is now proving Nopsca's theories to be valid.

The latest proof, described in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, has to do with the structure of the dinosaur bone fossils found on the Transylvania islands. (Transylvania is an historical region in present-day Romania.) The bones help to shoot down the biggest argument against dwarf dinosaurs, which is that the fossils found for them just belonged to younger dinos.

A team of researchers, led by Koen Stein and Martin Sander from Bonn University, found that at least one of the identified Transylvania dinosaurs, Magyarosaurus dacus, never grew any larger than a horse. Keep in mind that Magyarosaurus was a sauropod. These were plant-eating dinosaurs known for their stocky bodies, long necks, tiny heads and long tails. Some sauropods weighed around 100 tonnes and were among the world's largest animals.

It's believed that Magyarosaurus was even related to the enormous sauropod Argentinosaurus, which some think grew to 115 feet in length.

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Thought I'd share this and dwarf or not its a dinosaur. Very interesting read.




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