Two new sauropods in PeerJ today: Galeamopus pabsti (sp. nov) and Vouivria damparisensis (gen. et sp. nov.)

May 2, 2017

The best-preserved presacral vertebra of Vouivria damparisensis (Mannion et al. 2017: fig. 10).

New goodies out today in PeerJ: Tschopp and Mateus (2017) on the new diplodocid Galeamopus pabsti, and Mannion et al. (2017) redescribe and name the French ‘Bothriospondylus’ as Vouivria damparisensis.

C7 of Galeamopus pabsti (Tschopp and Mateus 2017: fig. 24).

Both papers are packed with interesting stuff that I simply don’t have time to discuss right now. Possibly Mike and I will come back with subsequent posts that discuss these critters in more detail. We both have a connection here besides our normal obsession with well-illustrated sauropods – Mike reviewed the Galeamopus paper, and I reviewed Vouivria. Happily, both sets of authors chose to publish the peer-review histories, so if you’re curious, you can go see what we said.

For now, I’ll just note that C7 of Galeamopus pabsti, shown above, is intriguingly similar in form to Vertebra ‘R’ of YPM 429, the ‘starship’ Barosaurus cervical (illustrated here). Mike and I spent a lot of time puzzling over the morphology of that vert before we convinced ourselves that much of its weirdness was due to taphonomic distortion and a restoration and paint job that obscured the fact that the metapophyses were missing. Given our ongoing project to unravel the wacky morphology of Barosaurus, I’m looking forward to digging into the morphology of G. pabsti in more detail.

I’ll surely irritate Mike by saying this, but my favorite figure in either paper is this one, Figure 4 from Tschopp and Mateus (2017). I can’t remember ever seeing an exploded skull diagram like this for a sauropod before, but it’s extremely helpful and I love it.

And that’s all for now. Go read these papers – they’re both substantial contributions with intriguing implications for the evolution of their respective clades. Congratulations to both sets of authors for producing such good work.


  • Mannion PD, Allain R, Moine O. (2017) The earliest known titanosauriform sauropod dinosaur and the evolution of Brachiosauridae. PeerJ 5:e3217
  • Tschopp E, Mateus O. (2017) Osteology of Galeamopus pabsti sp. nov. (Sauropoda: Diplodocidae), with implications for neurocentral closure timing, and the cervico-dorsal transition in diplodocids. PeerJ 5:e3179

16 Responses to “Two new sauropods in PeerJ today: Galeamopus pabsti (sp. nov) and Vouivria damparisensis (gen. et sp. nov.)”

  1. Dale mcinnes Says:

    That exploded overall view of the cranium is as beautiful as it is brilliant.

  2. Matt Wedel Says:

    Isn’t it just?

  3. Mike Taylor Says:


  4. Matt Wedel Says:

    Oh please. After my recent dalliances, posting enthusiastically about sauropod skulls is arguably a sign that I am on a path of reconciliation and recovery.

  5. Mike Taylor Says:

    Dude, I am sorry. I should have shown more grace and tolerance towards a brother who has fallen, but is on the road to repentance. I should be helping you, not mocking you. You jerk.

  6. LeeB Says:

    Nice papers.
    And good to see how many Brachiosaurs are getting recent full descriptions.

    Now I wonder how the Archbishop will fit in the phylogeny when it is described.


  7. Nathan Myers Says:

    Further evidence for defensive cranial detonation in sauropods!

  8. Andrew Stuck Says:

    Wow! I like that skull image! And I laughed at Nathan’s comment.

  9. Dale mcinnes Says:

    Sad. Always liked that name … Bothriospondylus

  10. Mike Taylor Says:

    Dale, not to worry: Bothriosondylus is still around; it’s just that the French material ain’t it. See Phil Mannion’s 2010 paper.


    Mannion, Philip D. 2010. A revision of the sauropod dinosaur genus `Bothriospondylus‘ with a redescription of the type material of the Middle Jurassic form `B. madagascariensis‘. Palaeontology 53(2):277­296. doi:10.1111/j.1475-4983.2009.00919.x

  11. Dale mcinnes Says:

    I’m unfortunately not up on my sauropods even though they are some of the most magnificent vertes that ever walked the planet.

    Is Antarctosaurus still in use ??

    Now don’t make me cry.

  12. Dale mcinnes Says:

    Pardon my manners. Forgot to thank you for that reference on Bothriospondylus.

  13. yes Dale, Antarctosaurus is indeed still in use, though restricted only to the type species A. wichmannianus. The others (“A.” giganteus, brasiliensis, jaxarticus) probably don’t belong to Antarctosaurus.

  14. Dale mcinnes Says:

    Of course. I remember now that the material was split up.

  15. I’m disappointed that Tschopp and Mateus (2017) don’t clarify the exact stratigraphic position position of Galeamopus pasti, other than than the Howe-Scott and Felch quarries are younger than the Salt Marsh Member. If anyone knows, are they lower or middle Brushy Basin Member?

  16. Jason,

    Marsh-Felch Quarry 1 is part of Zone 3 of the Morrison formation, so very low Brushy Basin member.

    Looking at the stratigraphic information in Tschopp’s thesis, the Howe quarries appear to fit right around the zone 3-zone 4 transition, but looking at John Foster’s stratigraphic data he suggests lower, around Zone 2 (which would be late Salt Wash). I unfortunately can’t find anything more specific at the moment.

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