Saltopus ( hopping foot )

Short Info

Saltopus ( hopping foot )

Phonetic : sal-to-pus

Named By : Friedrich von Huene – 1910

Diet : Carnivore

Size : 80 – 100 centimetres long

Type of Dinosaur : Small Theropod

Type Species : elginensis

Found in : Scotland, United Kingdom

When it Lived : Late Triassic, 221-210 million years ago

Saltopus (“hopping feet”) is one of the genus belonging to a small bipedal dinosauriforms, which includes the one species S. Elginensis, which dates back to The late Triassic period in Scotland. It is among the most well-known Elgin reptiles.

Saltopus elginensis can be identified through a single fragment of skullless skeleton, but containing components of the vertebral column the forelimbs and pelvis, and the hindlimbs. They have been preserved mainly as natural castings or impressions in sandstone. Very tiny bone material remains. It was approximately what a cat would be and could have been 100-80 centimetres (31-39 in) in length. It was hollow like the ones of birds and dinosaurs. It might have weighed as much as 1 kilogram (2.2 lbs). It was believed to be 50 centimeters long, 15cm high in the hips and 110 grams. The majority of its length was explained through the tail. The hands had five fingers with its fourth and fifth fingers diminished in size. Contrary to the initial description the year 2011 saw it discovered that sacrum (hip vertebrae) consisted of two vertebrae, which was the primordial ancestral condition, and not four.

The sole fossil known of Saltopus was found in the hands of William Taylor in the Lossiemouth West and East Quarries. The species was described and named by Friedrich von Huene in 1910 as the species of type Saltopus elginensis. The name itself is derived in Latin saltare “to jump” and Greek pous pous “foot”. The name specifically refers to its location close to Elgin and an animal called the Elgin Reptiles. The holotype, NHMUK R.3915 was discovered in the Lossiemouth Sandstone Formation dating from the Carnian-Norian stage.

Source: Wikipedia