Cetiosauriscus ‭(‬whale-lizard-like‭)

Short Info

Cetiosauriscus ‭(‬whale-lizard-like‭)

Phonetic : Set-e-os-sore-is-kuss.

Named By : Friedrich von Huene‭ ‬-‭ ‬1927

Diet : Herbivore

Size : Estimated 15 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Sauropod

Type Species : C.‭ ‬stewarti‭ (‬type‭)‬

Found in : England, United Kingdom

When it Lived : Mid Jurassic, 175-160 million years ago

Cetiosauriscus (/,si:tioU’so:rIsk@s/ SEE-tee-oh-SOR-iss-k@s) is a genus of sauropod dinosaur that lived between 166 and 164 million years ago during the Callovian (Middle Jurassic Period) in what is now England. It was a herbivore. Cetiosauriscus was — according to sauropod norms — an averagely long tail as well as longer forelimbs, which made them as long as hindlimbs. It was estimated to be around 15 meters (49 feet) long, with a length of approximately 4 to 10 tons (3.9 to 9.8 length tons and 4.4 as well as 11.0 shorter tonnes) by weight.


Cetiosauriscus compositeUnknown (photographs taken in BMNH), collage by J.J. Liston, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons


The only fossil known is the majority of the rear portion of a skeleton, as well as an hindlimb (NHMUK R3078). It was discovered at Cambridgeshire during the early 1890s the fossil was described in the work of Arthur Smith Woodward in 1905 as a unique specimen of this species Cetiosaurus leedsi. It was later changed in 1927 in 1927, when Friedrich von Huene found NHMUK R3078 as well as it’s C. leedsi species to be different from Cetiosaurus which led to its own genus. He was identified as Cetiosauriscus which translates to “Cetiosaurus-like”. Cetiosauriscus leedsi was named the sauropod family of Diplodocidae due to the similarity of the foot and tail, and also had the ambiguous or undetermined kind of species “Cetiosauriscus” greppini, “C.” longus and “C.” glymptonensis assigned to it. In the year 1980, Alan Charig named a new species of Cetiosauriscus in NHMUK R3078 due to the lack there was no comparable materials to C. leedsi. This species was known as Cetiosauriscus stewarti. Due to the poor state in the preservation and conservation of Cetiosauriscus the leedsi fossils, Charig made a plea to International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature to change the name to C. stewarti the standard species. Cetiosauriscus stewarti was declared to be the oldest known diplodocid before a phylogenetic study released in 2003 found that the species belonged to Mamenchisauridae which was it was followed with studies conducted in in 2015 that showed it to be outside Neosauropoda and not being a mamenchisaurid as such.

Cetiosauriscus was discovered within the sedimentary marine from the Oxford Clay Formation alongside many divers invertebrate species including marine ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs and crocodylians as well as one pterosaur, as well as numerous dinosaurs including the ankylosaur Sarcolestes and the Stegosaurs Lexovisaurus and Loricatosaurus as well as the ornithopod Callovosaurus as well as several taxa not identified. The theropods Eustreptospondylus as well as Metriacanthosaurus are both known in the form, but likely not on the same place as Cetiosauriscus.

The fossil that is now known as Cetiosauriscus was initially attributed to the genus Cetiosaurus. It was one among the first Sauropods that came to be identified, in 1842, by the Palaeontologist Richard Owen, and one with a complex past because of numerous unsubstantiated references of specimens and species which comprised the majority of English sauropods. The species that is the most commonly used for Cetiosaurus has been changed over time due to incomplete remains and the significance of the taxon and the details about its anatomy as well as its relationships are not yet clear. Cetiosaurus was first designated to encompass C. medius C. the brevis C. Brachyurus along with C. longus which range across C. brachyurus to Middle Jurassic to the Early Cretaceous of different locations throughout England. Because none of these species is really diagnostic and Cetiosaurus is an historical and taxonomically significant taxon and taxonomically significant one, the more complete Middle Jurassic species C. Oxoniensis, which was named by the geologist John Phillips in 1871 became the species of type. C. Glymptonensis was mentioned within the publication of Phillips but it is less comprehensive and has a questionable credibility.

A different English taxon Ornithopsis hulkei It was established in 1870 by Palaeontologist Harry Govier Seeley for vertebrae that were found in the Early Cretaceous Wessex Formation, earlier than the current specie of Cetiosaurus. Seeley thought Ornithopsis as being closely with Cetiosaurus however, it was distinct due to its inside bone anatomy. Another specie, Ornithopsis leedsii was named in 1887 by John Hulke for a pelvis vertebrae, ribs, and vertebrae discovered from Alfred Nicholson Leeds, an English farmer and fossil hunter who throughout his lifetime accumulated many fossil collections of Oxford Clay. Oxford Clay. O. leedsii, which was discovered in the Late Jurassic, showed similarities to the older Cetiosaurus Oxoniensis, as well as younger O. Hullei. The species was discussed in greater specific terms in a paper by Seeley in 1889. In 1889, he argued that O. hulkei, C. Oxoniensis as well as O. leedsii all to be part of the same genus, and bear the same name Cetiosaurus. However, the naturalist Richard Lydekker discussed with Seeley before the publication of Seeley’s paper in 1889 in 1889, the fact that Cetiosaurus and Ornithopsis weren’t the one taxon. Lydekker believed it was possible that Wealden fossils (including O. hulkei) were part of Ornithopsis as well as the Jurassic remnants (including O. leedsii and C. Oxoniensis) belong to Cetiosaurus. 8. Lydekker in 1895 altered his mind, and referred to this species O. leedsii to Pelorosaurus (known previously from the species P. Brevis, which was previously called Cetiosaurus brevis)–as P. leedsi–and also referred to the genus as Atlantosauridae. The classification proposed by Lydekker was not endorsed by subsequent writers like Palaeontologist Arthur Smith Woodward in 1905 who used the classification scheme of Seeley.

The sauropod fossil now known in the present as Cetiosauriscus stewarti was found in the spring of 1898 by workers working in clay in the region around Fletton in the area to the southwest of Peterborough and to the east from Peterborough and east of the Great Northern Railway line. The pits in this area show the fossil rich sedimentary rock of The marine Oxford Clay, which is of the middle Callovian age , and is today considered as being one of the most important geological features of British Palaeontology. The fossil of the sauropod may originate in NPBCL pit number. 1 that was the northernmost pit run by New Peterborough Brick Company Limited which was the one that produced the highest vertebrate fossils. The discovery came by Leeds who, after excavation, brought the sauropod fossil to Eyebury in the Leeds family’s home. In mid-August after some repairs and cleaning of the specimen Geologist Henry Woodward visited Eyebury and made a life-sized illustration of the remains that he presented to the British Association for the Advancement of Science Meeting. After this presentation, on the 17th of August , 1898 Henry Woodward returned with American Palaeontologist Othniel Charles Marsh, who believed that the sauropod was closely connected to Diplodocus. North American taxon Diplodocus. Alfred Leeds offered the sauropod to the British Museum of Natural History (BMNH which is now abbreviated as NHMUK) in exchange for PS250 that would translate to approximately PS30,529 by 2017. The NHMUK had in the years 1890 and 1892, purchased both the First second and Third Collections from Alfred Leeds, respectively. Woodward who was the Geology Keeper at the NHMUK has had “great pleasure” to recommend to the trustees of the NHMUK that the fossil be bought. The purchase was approved on 25 February 1899 along and the acquisition of other remains for just PS357 (~PS43,596 today) and the Leeds sauropod was given its accession numbers BMNH R3078 (now NHMUK R3078).

The volume of material that was found made NHMUK R3078 the largest and most complete sauropod specimen in within the United Kingdom, comparable only with it “Rutland Dinosaur” (referred to Cetiosaurus) discovered in the year 1967. The regions that are known to be part of the specimen are the hindlimb and forelimb and the vertebral column. The forelimb is devoid of the manus (hand) as well as a part of the ulna and the radius and hindlimbs, while the forelimb is missing just a few bones within the foot pes (foot) as well as fragments from the tibia fibula , and ilium. The vertebrae that are known include four dorsal vertebrae, including the sacrum’s neural spines and the anterior caudal vertebrae (tail bones) as well as a set of 27 almost complete vertebrae in to the mid-point of the tail, with connected chevrons or articulated the chevrons (ribs that run along the bottom of the tail) however the vertebral sequence isn’t continuous. The tail point (NHMUK R1967) located in the same area however, it was a different animal that was believed by Palaeontologist Alan Charig in 1980 to be part of Cetiosauriscus. The assigning to NHMUK R1967 Cetiosauriscus was thought to be not likely in the other studies of Palaeontologists Friedrich von Huene, Paul Upchurch and Darren Naish because of the absence of overlap and the uncertain physical positions. In 1903 the skeleton was displayed at the British Museum, so it could be easily compared with other sauropods mounted of North America. Cetiosauriscus was the mount. Cetiosauriscus was displayed before the cast skeleton of Diplodocus and was displayed alongside the dorsal vertebrae NHMUK N1984 as well as a few teeth that were isolated from an acamarasaurid (possibly related to Cetiosauriscus) which made it the first sauropod skeleton to be mounted within the United Kingdom.

NHMUK R3078 was assigned to 1905 Arthur Woodward to the species Cetiosaurus leedsii because it came from an identical geologic structure as the other specimens classified as C. leedsii. Woodward also identified the dorsal vertebrae NHMUK R1984 as well as that of the tip at the tail NHMUK N1967 to the species. The year 1927 was the first time Huene briefly described the anatomy and physiology of C. leedsii. In this, the species had numerous similarities to Haplocanthosaurus and was probably to be a cross between Cetiosaurus as a whole and the previous genus. To this end, Huene proposed the name for the genus Cetiosauriscus to describe the species. The genus that he proposed was to the specimens NHMUK R1984-1988, and NHMUK R3078.

Cetiosauriscus was a moderately-sized and quadrupedal Eusauropod. It had an averagely long tail and arms with a length that was quite long that brought the shoulders to the hips. Cetiosauriscus was around 15 m (49 feet) long, based on the skeleton that is known, and comparable to potential relatives like 16 millimeters (52 feet) long Cetiosaurus as well as 16.5 millimeters (54 feet) in length Patagosaurus. the weight and size of Cetiosauriscus is not certain, as it is dependent on the phylogenetic position. Restored as an diplodocid, Cetiosauriscus was estimated by Paul (2010) as 4 t (3.9 long tons; 4.4 short tons) however, after being restored as an cetiosaur it was calculated to be Paul (2016) at 10 tonnes (9.8 long tons and 11.2 short tons).

Source: Wikipedia