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Current Affairs

New dinosaur species of Greenland

Date: 11 November 2021 Tags: Biodiversity

Issue

A new species of dinosaur discovered in Greenland has been named as Issi saaneq. The new discovery was made after creating digital 3D models from bones.

 

Background

The bones of the dinosaur were unearthed in 1994. They were assumed to belong to Plateosaurus, a well-known long-necked dinosaur.

 

Details

  • The Issi saaneq was a two legged species of dinosaur and lived 214 million years ago in an area that is now part of Greenland.

  • The dinosaur was a long-necked, medium sized herbivore which was a predecessor of sauropods, the largest land animal ever lived.

  • The dinosaur has been named based on Greenland’s Inuit language to honour the legacy. The name translates to “coldbone”.

                         

New discovery

  • It is the first distinct Greenlandic dinosaur species. The bones belong to juvenile and almost adult dinosaur that lived in Late Triassic Period.

  • Eventhough the dinosaur is different from all other sauropodomorphs discovered, it has similarities with dinosaurs found in Brazil.

 

Significance

The research provides evidence of diverse range of dinosaurs from the Late Triassic period and also allows study of evolutionary pathways and timeline.

 

Triassic period

  • The Triassic is a geologic period and system which spans 50.6 million years from the end of the Permian Period to the beginning of the Jurassic Period.

  • The first true mammals evolved during this period, as well as the first flying vertebrates.  A specialized subgroup of archosaurs, called dinosaurs appeared for the first time.

  • The super-continent called Pangea began breaking apart after mid-Triassic. The land mass formed Laurasia to the north and Gondwana to the south.