Talarurus ‭(‬Wicker basket tail‭)

Short Info

Talarurus ‭(‬Wicker basket tail‭)

Phonetic : Tal-ah-roo-russ

Named By : Evgeny Maleev‭ ‬-‭ ‬1952

Diet : Herbivore

Size : Estimated 4 – 6 meters long

Type of Dinosaur : Armoured Dinosaur

Type Species : T.‭ ‬plicatospineus‭ (‬type‭)

Found in : Mongolia‭ ‬-‭ ‬Bayan Shireh Formation

When it Lived : Late Cretaceous, 99-89 million years ago

Talarurus (/,tael@’rU@r@sor TAL-@-ROOR@s; that means “basket tail” or “wicker tail”) is an ankylosaurid genus that was found in Asia in the Late Cretaceous period, about 9 million to 89 million years in the past. Talarurus’s first remains Talarurus have been discovered as early as 1948 and then was described by Russian paleontologist Evgeny Maleev, with the species of type T. theospineus. It is recognized from numerous but sparse samples that make this one of the best known ankylosaurines along with Pinacosaurus. The bones of the specimens are made up of a variety of bones found in the body. Five skulls have been found and placed in the genus of Pinacosaurus however the two that were discovered were extremely broken.


Dinosaurium, Talarurus plicatospineus 2Radim Holiš, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0 CZ, via Wikimedia Commons


Medium-sized massively built, ground-dwelling quadripedal herbivore that could be up to 5 meters (16 feet) in length and weighed between 454-907 kg (1,001 to 2,000 pounds) almost a tonne. As with other ankylosaurs, Talarurus was heavily armored and had an axe on its tail which limited its speed. Talarurus can be classified a member of Ankylosauria and is in the Ankylosaurinae which is a family of related ankyosaurs. Talarurus is found in the Bayan Shireh Formation, being likely niche-divided by Tsagantegia in the form of its muzzle. It has an oval shape designed specifically to graze. They are the oldest known ankylosaurines found in Asia however, they aren’t similar to one another. It appears that the most close to Talarurus was Nodocephalosaurus Ankylosaurin that had the same facial osteoderms.

The majority bones in the mounts found in Talarurus are in disrepair due to a variety of issues, like the ribs facing downwards instead of towards the sides like in the majority of ankylosaurs, a wrong skull cast that is made up of related species, and not based on the existing skull material; extremely leg and arms that were splayed and four digits on the feet, when in fact they only had three as was indicated by the ankylosaurines that were related to it. These errors were caused by anatomical misinterpretations as ankylosaurs were not widely understood at the at the time, and also, Talarurus is not known as an entire skull.

Talarurus fossils have been found in the southeastern regions within the Gobi Desert in what is currently Mongolia. The Holotype of the specimen PIN 557-91 was found at the end of 1948, by The Joint Soviet-Mongolian Paleontological Expedition, and was found in sandy red calcareous claystone in the Baynshire area within the Bayan Shireh Formation. Talarurus was identified in 1952 and was named after the Russian paleontologist Evgeny Maleev in the year 1952. The specimen PIN 557, which was the initial holotype conceived by Maleev is comprised of fragments of skull that was a posterior part of the skull’s roof including the occipital area and the basicranium, a number of vertebrae, a number of ribs, a scapulocoracoid the humerus, a circle an ulna almost complete manus, a part of an ilium ischium an femur, a Tibia and a fibula, as well as a pes that is nearly complete, as well as various scutes and armor. The name that is commonly used, Talarurus, is derived from the Greek talaros (“talaros” meaning baskets or the wicker-cage) in addition to oura (“oura” that means the rear, or tail) as a reference to the club-end of the tail, which is reminiscent of an wicker basket, as well as its length that comprises interlaced bony bones that resemble the weave used in the making of baskets from wicker. The precise designation, “plicatospineus”, is originated of its roots in the Latin”plicatus” (meaning folded) and spineus (meaning spiny or thorny) as a reference to the many osteoderms that formed the armor in its earlier life. It actually consisted of the remains of six people discovered in the area of. The year 1977 was the time Teresa Maryanska chose PIN 557-91, which was a posterior back of the skull, to be the holotype, due to the differences between the two individuals. In addition, she changed the name Syrmosaurus disparoserratus to a different kind of species, namely Talarurus disparoserratus. In 1987, it was changed to the distinct Genus Maleevus. A few of the specimens were put together into a skeletal display in Orlov Museum. Orlov Museum. While very comprehensive but in a number of ways the exhibit is highly incorrect. The sole valid species currently known can be identified as Talarurus plicatospineus.

Talarurus is known today from at least 12 individual specimens collected from various locations. This specimen PIN 3780/1 was taken from sediments of the terrestrial environment in the Bayshin-Tsav region within the Bayan Shireh Formation, by an expedition that was jointly led by the Soviet Union and Mongolia in 1975. It is kept within the Paleontological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences located in Moscow. The specimen was classified as Talarurus and is thought to date back to the Turonian phase that was part of the Cretaceous. The specimen is comprised of the skull’s top and a skeleton fragment. Since 2006, within the context of the Korea Mongolia Joint International Dinosaur Project several specimens have also been identified to Talarurus located at The Baynshire in the Baynshire and Shine Us Khuduk localities. In 2014, they were not described. Another specimen belonging to this genus in The Bayshin Tsav locality is composed of an (undescribed) skull that is missing its the cranial roof, the occipital portion and a braincase. Another undescribed specimen taken from the Baga Tarjach locality, consists of the fragment of a maxilla that has eight teeth. Arbour has listed many of the referenced and additional sources for Talarurus.

Additional material was discovered. In 2007 as part of the Korea-Mongolia International Dinosaur Experiment MPC-D 100/1354 and MPC -D 100/1355 as well as MPC -D 100/1356 were found in the eastern portion of the Gobi Desert, in the Bayn Shire locality in the Bayan Shireh Formation. The specimens were described in more detail in the year 2019 and consisting of three preserved skulls in medium condition along with additional anatomical and ecological information for Talarurus. The new specimens are now permanently stored at the Institute of Paleontology and Geology of the Mongolian Academy of Sciences.

Source: Wikipedia