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Basketball Court-Sized Dinosaur Species Is Largest Ever Found In Australia

by : Niamh Shackleton on : 08 Jun 2021 10:22
Basketball Court-Sized Dinosaur Species Is Largest Ever Found In AustraliaScott Hocknull/Eromanga Natural History Museum/Gary Cranitch/Queensland Museum

Scientists in Australia have identified a new species of dinosaur, said to be as big as a basketball court.

The dinosaur’s skeleton was first discovered in Queensland in 2007, but has only just been classified as an Australotitan cooperensis – also known as ‘the southern titan’.

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Thought to be one of the world’s largest dinosaurs, the giant reptile once stood at 21ft (6.5m) tall and 98ft (30m) long.

Palaeontologists compared its bones to that of other sauropods – plant-eating dinosaurs known for their large stature and long necks – in a bid to try to identify it.

Australotitan cooperensis roamed the Earth around 92-96 million years ago, BBC News reports.

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It reportedly took so long to identify the dinosaur because of the size of its bones and the fragile condition they were in. They were also discovered in a remote location in Queensland, making the identification process even more difficult.

Dinosaur researchers Robyn and Stuart Mackenzie coincidentally owned the farm where the Australotitan cooperensis’s remains were found.

Stuart said of the discovery and recent identification, ‘It’s amazing to think from the first bones discovered by our son, the first digs with the Queensland Museum, through to the development of a not-for-profit museum that runs annual dinosaur digs, all have helped us to get to this point, it’s a real privilege.’

Australotitan cooperensis discovery (Rochelle Lawrence/Queensland Museum)Rochelle Lawrence/Queensland Museum
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Speaking of the find, Dr Scott Hocknull, one of the lead researchers, said, ‘It looks like Australia’s largest dinosaurs were all part of one big happy family.’

The Queensland state government also welcomed the find, saying: ‘Australia is one of the last frontiers for dinosaur discovery and Queensland is quickly cementing itself as the palaeo-capital of the nation – there is still plenty more to discover.’

Featured Images Credits: Scott Hocknull/Eromanga Natural History Museum/Gary Cranitch/Queensland Museum

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Niamh Shackleton

Niamh Shackleton is a pint sized person and journalist at UNILAD. After studying Multimedia Journalism at the University of Salford, she did a year at Caters News Agency as a features writer in Birmingham before deciding that Manchester is (arguably) one of the best places in the world, and therefore moved back up north. She's also UNILAD's unofficial crazy animal lady.

Topics: News, Australia, Dinosaur, Now, Science, World News

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BBC News
  1. BBC News

    Scientists say new dinosaur species is largest found in Australia