Eromanga/Cooper Basin Discoveries

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Natural History Society

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‘SID’ the sauropod

Named in honour of Sir Sidney Kidman, renowned landholder of the Cooper Creek area, was discovered in the June 2010 dig on Plevna Downs. This dinosaur is smaller than both Cooper and Zac and is most likely from a different sauropod group. The crushed remains of this dinosaur were discovered within what is thought to be layer of mud trampled by other sauropods.

This feature is completely unique in Australia being the only locality where the preserved trampling of bones and compressed mud can be found together. The trample-area is in need of preservation to protect it from further degradation by the elements, including replication of the surface features which represent the inpacts of sauropod feet, compressing the mud into a feature very similar to that of a cow ‘pad’ – except that this one is several meters wide and over 50m long!

 

Profile of ‘Sid’

Location: West of Eromanga, South-West Queensland, Australia.

Age: Approximately 95-98 million years ago: Cenomanian Epoch, mid-Cretaceous Period.

Size: Small-sized, possibly 10m long.

Type: Sid is very different from any other Australian sauropod so far found, however, we are working on preparing more fossils of this amazing dinosaur to figure out what sort of sauropod it is. Many of the bones have been crushed by the trampling from other dinosaurs, so the painstaking process of piecing this animal back together will take some time. Once the scientific analysis is completed, we will be able to post more information.

Formation: Winton Formation, Eromanga Basin.

Classification: As yet unknown.

Excavation: Sid was a surprise, having been excavated during the digs at Cooper’s site. His bones were not known to be from another dinosaur until preparation began on the large rocks encasing most of the bones. Preparation revealed a much smaller dinosaur than Cooper, which alerted palaeontologists to the possibility of another small-sized sauropod amongst the Cooper skeleton. It turns out that Sid is from a very different sauropod altogether.