Liliensternus ‭(‬Rühle von Lilienstern’s one‭)

Short Info

Liliensternus ‭(‬Rühle von Lilienstern's one‭)

Phonetic : Lil-e-en-ster-nus.

Named By : Samuel Paul Welles‭ ‬-‭ ‬1984

Diet : Carnivore

Size : Estimated 5 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Small Theropod

Type Species : L.‭ ‬liliensterni‭ (‬type‭)

Found in : Germany‭ ‬-‭ ‬Trossingen Formation

When it Lived : Late Triassic, 205-202 million years ago

Liliensternus, a basal neotheropod dinosaur genus that has since died out, was extinct in the Triassic Period. It lived around 210 million years ago. This is what is now Germany. Liliensternus was a bipedal, medium-sized, ground-dwelling carnivore that could grow to up to 5.15m (16.9ft). It is one of the most well-recognized Triassic theropods from Europe, and the largest.


Liliensternus liliensterniGhedoghedo, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Liliensternus measured approximately 5.15m (16.9ft) in length and may have weighed around 127 kg (280 lbs). Others estimate that Liliensternus was a mere 5.2m (17.1ft) in length and weighed only 200 kg (441lb). Two Liliensternus specimens’ remains have been found together in a syntype series, inventory number MB.R.2175. It contains fragmentary and partial skeletons from at least two individuals. These skeletons include elements of the skull and lower jaws as well as the vertebrae. Dilophosaurus’ tibia (409mm) is shorter than Liliensternus’ femur (440mm). This is in contrast to coelophysid taxa like Coelophysis. Paul (1988) stated that Liliensternus could be considered a intermediate between Coelophysis or Dilophosaurus based on its appearance. While the skull isn’t well-known, there are many reconstructions of Liliensternus that show a crest very similar to that seen in Dilophosaurus. As with Dilophosaurus, its ilium (hipbone) is very short. Liliensternus is a five-finger creature, just like its contemporaries. However, its fourth and fifth fingers are smaller than the rest. This could be a transitional stage between five-fingered theropods from the Triassic, and three-fingered theropods from the Jurassic.

Rauhut et al. Rauhut et al. (1998) suggested that the remains could be juvenile or subadult individuals based on the absence of two fused sacrals as well as the fact that the neurocentral stitches are still visible in the vertebrae.

A diagnosis is an indication of the anatomical characteristics of an organism or group that collectively distinguish it. Some of the features that are included in a diagnosis can also be autapomorphies. A distinct anatomical feature is one that is specific to a particular organism or group. Rauhut (2000) identifies Liliensternus based on the following characteristics: The cervical vertebrae have a wide rounded ridge running from the posterior end to the posteroventral edge of the vertebral centrum. There are also one pair of cervical pleurocoels.

The syntype series HMN BM.R.2175 of Liliensternus was found near Grosser Gleichberg, in the Trossingen Formation, Thuringia. It also included Ruehleia’s remains. The syntypes were found by Hugo Ruhle von Lilienstern during the winter 1932/1933 in marlstone, a lime-rich mudstone that was deposited in the Norian stage (around 228 to 209 million years ago). In 1834, a left metatarsal was found in the Trossingen Formation, in Bayern, Germany. It was later assigned to this genus. Meyer (1855) originally described this metatarsal as a pedal or manual element. Huene (1908), a Plateosaurus biologist, identified the material as a proximal Metatarsal. Moser re-identified it as Liliensternus in 2003. Sander (1992), who referred to additional material to Liliensternus said that it was collected in 1961 in grey/green marlstone in Aargau (Switzerland). This is also believed to be the Norian stage in the Late Triassic period. This Liliensternus tooth was referred to by Sander (1992). It was deposited in the Norian and collected in 1913 from Baden-Wurttemberg’s Lowenstein Formation in dark red claystone. This genus was only known from later strata when blue claystone, from the Rhaetian Stage of the Late Triassic, was found in the Trossingen Formation, Sachsen-Anhalt. It dates back approximately 208 million to 201 millions years. The Liliensternus specimens were kept in Hugo Ruhle von Lilienstern’s castle until 1969, when they were moved to their current location at the Natural History Museum Berlin.

The genus and the specific names Liliensternus liliensterni derive their names from Hugo Ruhle von Lilienstern, a count and amateur paleontologist. The dinosaur was named in his honour because he founded a paleontological museum at his castle in Bedheim on the 1st of July 1934. Friedrich von Huene first described Liliensternus in 1934. It was first named by Friedrich von Huene in 1934 as Halticosaurus. The type species of Liliensternus is Halticosaurus. The combinatio Nova is Liliensternus.

Gilles Cuny, Peter Galton and Peter Galton discovered a new species in 1993 that they assigned to the genus Liliensternus. Others began to notice differences in L. airelensis from the type species L. liliensterni. In 2007, Martin Ezcurra, Cuny and Cuny assigned this material to their own genus, Lophostropheus.

Source: Wikipedia