In western Romania, an international team of researchers has identified a new, previously unknown dinosaur species. The species, named for where it was found in Transylvania, lived some 70 million years ago and was a herbivore, the University of Tübingen reported Thursday.
The previously unknown miniature dinosaur, scientifically named Transylvanosaurus platycephalus, was about two meters long, walked on two legs and belonged to the group of the so-called rhabdodontids.
In Transylvania, like other dinosaurs there, these animals only reached a small body size, which is why they are known as dwarf dinosaurs. According to the researchers, a limited food supply in Europe at the time probably led to a modified posture.
Animal lived on an island in the Cretaceous Period
Europe was a tropical archipelago during the Cretaceous Period, which began 145 million years ago and ended 66 million years ago. The species Transylvanosaurus platycephalus lived on one of the many islands along with other miniature dinosaurs, crocodiles, turtles and huge pterosaurs, whose wings were up to ten meters long.
For the Cretaceous, the Hateg basin in Transylvania is one of the most important sites in Europe. A total of ten dinosaur species have already been identified there.
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