Named By: José Bonaparte - 1991.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Abelisauria, Noasauridae.
Species: V. unicus (type).
Size: Roughly estimated about 1.2 meters long.
Known locations: Argentina, Patagonia - Bajo de la Carpa Formation.
Time period: Santonian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Partial leg and foot.
only named from a leg and foot, Velocisaurus
seems to have been a
particularly fast running dinosaur given that the leg shows clear
adaptations for running, hence the name which means ‘swift
lizard’. When the dinosaur Velocisaurus was
first described by José
Bonaparte in 1991 he speculated that Velocisaurus
might have been
omnivorous given that the only claw found was straight, and not
shaped like that seen in a meat eating theropod dinosaur. This might
indicate that Velocisaurus was not running after
other dinosaurs to
eat, however without a skull and ideally confirmed stomach contents,
the exact diet of Velocisaurus can only be guessed
is currently considered to be a noasaurid dinosaur, and a
particularly close relative of Masiakasaurus
Velocisaurus should not be confused with Velociraptor, a small but famous genus of dromaeosaur that lived on the other side of the world.
- Los vertebrados fósiles de la Formación Rio Colorado, de la Ciudad de Neuquén y Cercanías, Cretácico Superior, Argentina. [The fossil vertebrates of the Rio Colorado Formation, of the city of Neuquén and surroundings, Upper Cretaceous, Argentina]. - Revista del Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales "Bernardino Rivadavia" e Instituto Nacional de Investigación de las Ciencias Naturales. Paleontología 4: 17-123. - José Bonaparte - 1991.