Chialingosaurus ‭(‬Chialing lizard after the Chialing River‭)‬

Short Info

Chialingosaurus ‭(‬Chialing lizard after the Chialing River‭)‬

Phonetic : Chee-a-ling-o-sore-us.

Named By : C.‭ ‬C.‭ ‬Young‭ ‬-‭ ‬1959

Diet : Herbivore

Size : Estimated 4 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Sauropod

Type Species : C.‭ ‬kuani‭ (‬type‭)‬

Found in : China‭ ‬-‭ ‬Sichuan Province‭ ‬-‭ ‬Dashanpu/Upper Shaximiao Formation

When it Lived : Middle Jurassic, 160 million years ago

Chialingosaurus (meaning “Chialing Lizard”) is a genus that includes herbivorous stegosaurians that are like Kentrosaurus of the Upper Shaximiao Formation, Late Jurassic beds found in Sichuan Province in China. Its longevity makes it one of the oldest species of stegosaurs that lived for around one hundred million years before. Because the animal was an herbivore researchers believe that Chialingosaurus likely ate Cycads and ferns, which were abundant in the time that Chialingosaurus was living.


Chialingosaurus-Paleozoological Museum of China
Jonathan Chen, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Chialingosaurus’ fossils were discovered by scientist Kuan Yaowu or Guan Yao-Wu in the year 1957 near Taipingstai located in Quxian County, while surveying the Chialing River in southern China. The species of the type Chialingosaurus Kuani was identified in the work of paleontologist Yang Zhongjian, (“C. C. Young”) after two years in 1959. The name is generic and refers to Chialingosaurus kuani. Chialing. The particular name honors Kuan. Chialingosaurus is the very first stegosaurian identified from China.

The holotype, IVPP 2300, was found in a layer of the Upper Shaximiao Formation, dating from the Oxfordian-Kimmeridgian. It is comprised of a fragmentary skullless skeleton. It has six vertebrae, the coracoids, humeri, an right radius, along with three spinal vertebrae. The original material was expanded in December 1978, through Zhou Shiwu of the Municipal Museum of Chongqing. A second piece, CV 202, was called. It is a skeleton that has the skull partially complete, as well as lower jaws, a few vertebrae, limbs and vertebrae and four plates. Zhou believed that the Holotype and CV 200 were a single person, since the two specimens did not share. Another instance, CV 203, a partial skull that was not a skull, was used as the paratype. All specimens are subadult or juvenile.

in 1999 Li Kui, Zhang Yuguang, and Cai Kaiji referred to a second species called Chialingosaurus Guangyuanensis. The description was not given however the name was taken as the name of a nudum.

Yang in 1959 gave the diagnosis and highlighted the slim body of the beast. It could have been four meters (thirteen feet) long. But, the proportions of graciles could be due to the subadult age , and the rest of the traits that were diagnostic were similar to those of other Stegosaurs. in 1990 Peter Malcolm Galton identified only one autapomorphy: the trochanter in the lower part of the thighbone has a triangular shape with an extensive base. Susannah Maidment in 2008 even identified Chialingosaurus Kuani among the ineligible taxa of stegosaurs in her Stegosauria’s phylogeny. This was based on previous work done by Maidment & Wei in 2006 where the authors could not find any autapomorphies or distinctive characters for Chialingosaurus which makes it an unofficial name.

Yang created Chialingosaurus following Kentrosaurus. A few spine bases and plates being discovered, Yang believed that these plates were put in the front upper areas of the animal, and the spines in the hips and tail.

Source: Wikipedia