Kutch and Wales Dinosaur Fossils from Jurassic Period Drive Geologists High

Indo-German joint research team has discovered a rare fossil of the limb of a dinosaur at Kas Hill in Lodai area of Kutch in Gujarat, joining Balasinor, the only other site where several such fossils were found earlier.

The 10-meter-long herbivore became extinct millions of years ago and the fossil remains found on January 19 were about 130 million years old. Earlier, researchers had found a leg bone of ‘Camarasaurus Supremus’ whose fossilized remains were found in Europe too. The latest fossil has been sent to Munich in Germany to determine its species.

D K Pandey from the geology department of Rajasthan university, who was part of team, said, “The finding of a dinosaur bone from the Kimmeridgian Katrol Formation se diments of Lodai Dam-Kas Hill section of the Kutch Basin on January 19 further suggests that dinosaur bones can be found in the Kimmeridgian Baisakhi Formation of the Jaisalmer basin.”

German professor Franz T. Fuersich and professors from the Department of Geology, Krantiguru Shyamji Krishna Verma Kutch University also joined the team in their exploration.

Earlier findings from Balasinor in Mahisagar were almost 100 million years old, until they became extinct some 66 million years ago, said researchers. The Kutch and Jaisalmer basins were covered by the sea during the Jurassic Period (180 million years ago) and had regressed during the Cretaceous Period (65 million years ago).

Meanwhile, a new carnivorous dinosaur species named Dracoraptor hanigani was uncovered in the south of Wales is possibly the oldest known Jurassic dinosaur from the UK, said another study by David Martill from the University of Portsmouth, England, and colleagues from National Museum Wales and University of Manchester.

This is an artist's impression of Dracoraptor hanigani. CREDIT Bob Nicholls

This is an artist’s impression of Dracoraptor hanigani.
Bob Nicholls

Named Dracoraptor hanigani, which means ‘dragon robber’, in honour of Nick and Rob Hanigan, who discovered the fossil. From their analysis, the researchers believe this dinosaur was meat-eating, from the theropod group.

It lived at the beginning of the Jurassic Period (201 million years ago), at the time when south Wales was a coastal region like it is today.

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