South African and Argentinian palaentologists have identified a previously unknown type of herbivorous dinosaur with cross-shaped foot bones after they reexamined remains found in the 1930s.
The 200 million-year-old bones belong to four dinosaurs of the same species that lived close to the present-day South African border with Lesotho, the University of Cape Town said in an e-mailed statement on Thursday. The bones had been stored at the Evolutionary Science Institute in Johannesburg.
“This and other recent dinosaur discoveries in Argentina and South Africa are revealing that the diversity of herbivorous dinosaurs in our continents was remarkably high back in the Jurassic, about 190 million years ago when South America, South Africa and other southern hemisphere continents were a single super-continent known as Gondwana,” Jonah Choiniere, senior researcher in Dinosaur Palaeobiology at the ESI, part of Johannesburg’s University of the Witwatersrand, said in the statement.
The dinosaur has been named Sefapanosaurus, after the word for cross, sefapano, in the Sesotho language. The dinosaur was “medium sized,” UCT said in the statement.