Eocarcharia

Name: Eocarcharia ‭(‬Dawn shark‭)‬.
Phonetic: E-oh-kar-ka-ree-ah.
Named By: P.‭ ‬C.‭ ‬Sereno & S.‭ ‬L.‭ ‬Brusatte‭ ‬-‭ ‬2008.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Dinosauria,‭ ‬Saurischia,‭ ‬Theropoda,‭ ‬Carcharodontosauridae.
Species: E.‭ ‬dinops‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Carnivore.
Size: Holotype roughly between‭ 6 ‬and‭ 8‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: Niger‭ ‬-‭ ‬Elrhaz Formation.
Time period: Aptian/Albian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial cranial remains and teeth.

       Even though the name Eocarcharia‭ ‬means‭ ‘‬dawn shark‭’‬,‭ ‬it was actually a theropod dinosaur.‭ ‬This name came about from the serrated slicing teeth that are thought to have sliced through flesh as easily as a shark.‭ ‬The dawn part is‭ ‬a reference to its early appearance to some other related genera.‭ ‬Although only known from incomplete remains Eocarcharia has been identified as being a member of the Carcharodontosauridae,‭ ‬a group of theropod dinosaurs established around the type genus of Carcharadontosaurus,‭ ‬another dinosaur named for its tooth resemblance to a sharks.‭
       Some of the most noteworthy features of Eocarcharia are the enlarged bone growths above the eyes.‭ ‬These features likely served a display purpose,‭ ‬and may have been coloured differently to the rest of the head.‭ ‬Due to the incomplete nature of the remains only a broad ranged size estimate for Eocarcharia exists.‭ ‬This is based upon comparison to its more complete relatives,‭ ‬although it‭’‬s not unreasonable that larger estimates approaching twelve meters in length may be accurate given that it is a relative of Giganotosaurus,‭ ‬one of the largest known theropod dinosaurs.

Further reading
- Basal abelisaurid and carcharodontosaurid theropods from the Lower Cretaceous Elrhaz Formation of Niger. - Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 53(1):15-46. - P. C. Sereno and S. L. Brusatte - 2008.



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