Ampelosaurus ‭(‬Vine lizard‭)

Short Info

Ampelosaurus ‭(‬Vine lizard‭)

Phonetic : Am-pe-lo-sore-us.

Named By : Jean Le Loeuff‭ ‬-‭ ‬1995

Diet : Herbivore

Size : Estimated 15 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Sauropod

Type Species : A.‭ ‬atacis‭ (‬type‭)‬

Found in : France‭ ‬-‭ ‬Marnes Rouges Inférieures Formation

When it Lived : Late Cretaceous, 71-65 million years ago

Ampelosaurus (/,aempIloU’so:r@sor AM-pi-loh SOR-@s, which translates to “vine lizard”) is an titanosaurian sauropod dinosaur that was discovered in the Late Cretaceous Period of what is today France. The species that is its type can be identified as A. Attackis which was named by Le Loeuff in the year 1995. An unnamed species could have provided Ampelosaurus an age that reaches the current Cretaceous around 70-66 million years ago.

As with all sauropods, it was likely to have had a long neck and tail, but it also had armor in the shape of osteoderms. More than 500 bones were assigned to Ampelosaurus , and all except the skullcase (assigned the name of A. sp.) is identified as A. atis. It is believed that they belong in the same type since all differences in proportions of the limbs have been connected to the individual variation. A. is recognized from a handful of preserved teeth, as well as a materials from the cranium. The right side of the scapula has been uncovered connected to the coracoid. The scapula’s blade unlike the titanosaurs are triangular. The blade narrows towards the other end, not being expanded like other genera. A. Ataxis is identified by a pubis approximately 75 centimetres (30 in) long, and also an ilium. In addition it also has an incomplete forelimb and several femora.


Ampelosaurus mount 4
Jens Lallensack, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Titanosaurians were the most popular sauropod dinosaur species in the Cretaceous era. The Spanish location from the most recent Cretaceous from “Lo Hueco” yielded a very well preserved titanosaurian braincase. It shares many unique characteristics in common with A. atacis, which is from France. However, it did diverge in some ways from A. atacis on certain aspects too. The specimen is currently classified by the name of Ampelosaurus sp. Most likely, it’s an adult titanosaurian because skull bones are been joined.

Ampelosaurus lived with a myriad of animals. Nearly 8500 specimens were discovered alongside it including bivalves, gastropods and sauropods, crocodiles, plants, and invertebrates from the Villalba de la Sierra, Gres de Saint-Chinian, Marnes Rouges Inferieures and Gres de Labarre formations. Recent interest has made Ampelosaurus one the most famous dinosaurs from France.

As with most sauropods Ampelosaurus could have had a lengthy length of tail and neck, however it also wore armor that was made of osteoderms that ranged from 25 to 28 centimeters (9.8 and 11.0 inches) long. The four osteoderms that were found are of three distinct morphologies. they are bulb, plate and spine-shaped. Ampelosaurus is believed to have measured between 15 meters (49 feet) to 16 meters (52 feet) in length. It weighed around 15,000kg in weight. Ampelosaurus is recognized by its numerous bones that are not attached and teeth. It is among the most famous dinosaurs found in France. It is thought to be an elongated sauropod by Coria and co. (2005) due to smaller dimensions in comparison to its predecessors.

Ampelosaurus was discovered in the Campagne-sur-Aude commune in the Aude region of France. It was discovered in the lower layers of the Marnes Rouges Inferieures Formation which is from the early Maastrichtian time period in the Late Cretaceous Period, ~ 70 million years ago. The sediments are a relic of an earlier floodplain that has numerous channels of rivers. French paleontologist Jean Le Loeuff first described and named the dinosaur in 1995. Ampelosaurus is derived from Greek ampeloswhich means “the vine” and the Latinised Greek saurus, “reptile”. So, Ampelosaurus means “vineyard lizard” following that of the Blanquette de Limoux vineyard. The vineyard is situated in the south of the region that Ampelosaurus was discovered in. The name of the vineyard is derived from the Latin atax, meaning the “Aude river”.

First remains of the bones were discovered within a bonebed that was discovered in 1989. The bonebed resulted in numerous vertebrae and ribs from the tail and back as well as a number of bones from the limbs, but there was no skull material, aside from one tooth. Four osteoderms with different dimensions and shapes were discovered in the bone bed. The bone comes from different individuals. Since 1989, additional material has been found within the region in France and includes a complete skeleton that includes some parts of the skull and the lower jaw.

In 2001, it was in the year 2001 that the Campagne-sur-Aude site was once more explored and again by Gerard Chauvet, Jean-Luc Le Douarec Colette Rives, and Yvonne Vidoux. Following 13 years of searching they found a complete skeleton, which contained more of the bone, as well as other bones that were not found in the Holotype. The entire skeleton was donated into the Musee des Dinosaures, and it took around 10 years to complete.

The A. Sp. was first discovered in 2007. It was discovered in 2007. phase of construction of the high-speed rail line connecting Madrid with Valencia and was located in the fossilized site where many animals were discovered in, within the Villalba de la Sierra Formation. The site was located in an area called “Lo Hueco,” near the village of Fuentes, Castile-La Mancha, Spain. In the span of several months, a massive emergency excavation carried out by more than 60 paleontologists as well as 100 manual workers enabled thousands of fossils of invertebrates, plants, and vertebrates from the late Campanian to early Maastrichtian period to be preserved which included A. S.

Source: Wikipedia