A team of researchers have found the biggest dinosaur in Brazil. Apparently, the fossil vertebrae of this dinosaur, named Austroposeidon magnificus, has been hiding in a cupboard in Rio de Janeiro’s Museum of Earth Sciences for 60 years.
The Brazilian scientists estimate that the Austroposeidon magnificus is up to 25 meters or 82 feet long and around six to eight meters tall. It belonged to a group of herbivores called Titanosaur, which are known for having small heads, large bodies, long necks and tails.
The specimen, which only consists of the dinosaur’s neck vertebrae, was unearthed by the palaeontologist Llewellyn Ivor Price near the city of Presidente Prudente in Sao Paulo in the 1950s. It has been left in the museum’s storage since then. The palaeontologist also found other dinosaur fossils but there was not enough time to focus on Brazil’s largest dinosaur.
Although these bones seem inadequate, they were enough to indicate which dinosaur group Austroposeidon magnificus belonged to. Titanosaurs also lived in South America, Antarctica, Australia and Africa.
When Titanosaurs die, they become a great source of food for carnivorous dinosaurs. Experts suggest that the first thing these predators eat is the head.
“When these animals die, it’s… a huge new source of meat,” points out Diogenes de Almeida Campos, Museum of Earth Sciences’ director. “So all the hunters, the carnivores, ate this creature. The first thing they ate is the head because the brain must be tasty.”
Campos adds that the carnivores also broke the long bones to reach the bone marrow. After these big carnivores finish, the smaller ones try to scavenge whatever is left. The museum’s director also said, “Anything that did remain, the beetles and the spiders and the ants finished, and when there was just bones, the bacteria came. Finally, the remains sank into the lagoon.”