(After the deity Oxalá).
Named By: Alexander Wilhelm Armin Kellner, Sergio A.K. Azevedeo, Elaine B. Machado, Luciana B. Carvalho & Deise D.R. Henriques - 2011.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Spinosauridae, Spinosaurinae.
Species: O. quilombensis (type).
Size: Estimated between 12 and 14 meters long.
Known locations: Brazil, Cajual Island - Alcântara Formation.
Time period: Cenomanian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Single fused premaxillae, fragment of the left maxilla.
only currently known from partial snout remains, it is still enough
material to declare Oxalaia a spinosaurid
the unique nature of
the snout. Spinosaurid teeth were also known from the fossil site
before the current material was discovered, and may have belonged
to Oxalaia in life. With its total length
estimated between twelve
and fourteen metres, Oxalaia was smaller than Spinosaurus,
larger than Baryonx
and probably also Suchomimus.
Also if the larger
estimate of fourteen metres ever proves correct then Oxalaia
been the one of the longest South American theropod dinosaurs, being
just a bit
bigger than the lowest estimate of Giganotosaurus.
The species name O. quilombensis is in reference to the quilombo settlements on Cajual Island that were originally built by escaped slaves. Along with Irritator, the discovery of Oxalaia is further proof that Africa and South America were once joined during the Mesozoic, something that allowed the spinosaurids to spread over the two continents.
- A new dinosaur (Theropoda, Spinosauridae) from the Cretaceous (Cenomanian) Alcântara Formation, Cajual Island, Brazil. - Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências 83(1):99-108. - A. W. A. Kellner, S. A. K. Azevedo, E. B. Machado, L. B. Carvalho & D. D. R. Henriques - 2011.