(Northwestern Argetnina lizard).
Named By: J. F. Bonaparte & J. E. Powell - 1980.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Abelisauroidea, Noasauridae.
Species: N. leali (type).
Size: Uncertain due to lack of remains, but roughly estimated to be about 2.4 meters in length.
Known locations: Argentina, Salta Province - Lecho Formation.
Time period: Maastrichtian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial skull and post cranial remains including finger and lower leg bones.
Noasaurus is the type genus of the noasauridae, a side group of theropod dinosaurs that are thought to have had the same immediate origins as the abelisaurids (such as Abelisaurus and Aucasaurus). Noasaurus however is only known by very partial remains which makes it difficult to ascertain specific details about this dinosaur. At the time of its discovery, it was thought that Noasaurus had an enlarged claw on the foot, analogous to the sickle claws commonly seen on dromaeosaurs and troodonts such as Velociraptor and Troodon. However a 2010 study by Agnolin and Chiarelli has now reported that the correct position of the claw is actually on the hand. This would not mark the first time that such a mistake was made, the large theropod dinosaur Megaraptor was once thought to have had large sickle claws on its feet, just for them to later be realised as actually belonging on the hands.
- A continental assemblage of tetrapods from the Upper Cretaceous beds of El Brete, northwestern Argentina (Sauropoda-Coelurosauria-Carnosauria-Aves). Mémoires de la Société Géologique de France, Nouvelle Série 139:19-28. - J. F. Bonaparte & J. E. Powell - 1980.
- The position of the claws in Noasauridae (Dinosauria: Abelisauroidea) and its implications for abelisauroid manus evolution. - Paläontologische Zeitschrift. - F. L. Agnolin & P. Chiarelli - 2010.