Thursday, 20 February 2014

A sauropod right pes on a building block


 A sauropod right pes on a building block of the Early Cretaceous limestone at the pier near Pula (Istria, Croatia)

I don't remember if I said it before, but Istria has been literary "littered" with the Mesozoic fossils. The dinosaur tracks can be considered as numerous and omnipresent. Which doesn't mean they are easy to find by laymen. One has to learn distinguishing them from common artifacts. The limestone erosion is prone to forming very rich array of shapes.

So, here I am, walking along the beach and looking for some familiar shapes. I get awarded quite often. Here is a nice sauropod (probably a titanosaur) right hind foot print on a building block. The production process in the quarry left it in a rather good shape. Although, the block looks slightly "flawed" because of the dinosaur impression. The photograph was taken on February 15th 2014. Red outline helps you visualise the print. There is a low displacement rim in front of the track, where it should be. The pes measures about 60 cm in length, representing a decent size track maker sauropod. The largest sauropod hind footprints I've found there measure about 130-140 cm in length. Those were true giants! 

Finding dinosaur tracks on building blocks is not that rare either. I've found many myself. Some of the tracks were found by Dalla Vecchia, as described in his paper.

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