Fast Facts  Edit

Type: Sauropod Dinosaur
Diet:  Herbivore
Size: Estimated at‭ ‬14‭ ‬meters long,‭ ‬quite possibly larger.
Protection status: Extinct
Aeolosaurus is one of the better known South American titanosaurs of the late Cretaceous period.‭ ‬The name is derived from the mythical figure of Aeolus who was dubbed the‭ ‘‬keeper of the winds‭’ ‬in Homer’s Odyssey.‭ ‬It might seem rather obscure to name a dinosaur after this figure,‭ ‬but it is actually in reference to the prevailing winds that blow across Patagonia where the first specimen of Aeolosaurus was found.       

Aeolosaurus has a close relationship with the titanosaur Gondwanatitan which stems from the fact that Gondwanatitan was named from a species of Aeolosaurus,‭ ‬A.‭ ‬faustoi.‭ ‬Both of these titanosaurs have caudal‭ (‬tail‭) ‬vertebrae that are both elongated and have neural spines that angled anteriorly‭ (‬towards the front of the animal when the vertebrae are horizontally level‭)‬.‭ ‬These special vertebrae have been proposed to have formed to better support Aeolosaurus when it reared up on its hind legs granting this dinosaur an optionally bipedal stance when feeding.‭ ‬Such a stance would have allowed Aeolosaurus to reach higher into the tree canopy and feed upon parts that were beyond the reach of other dinosaurs without physically having to grow a longer neck for the purpose.       

Some remains of Aeolosaurus have confirmed the presence of osteoderms‭ (‬sometimes called scutes‭) ‬which were bony lumps that grew in the skin.‭ ‬These have been seen in some other titanosaurs and are thought to have been for additional defence against predatory theropods‭ ‬which in the case of Aeolosaurus may have included abelisaurs like Abelisaurus and Carnotaurus.‭

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