Theropod assemblages and a new ichnotaxon Gigandipus chiappei ichnosp. nov. from the Jiaguan Formation, Lower Cretaceous of Guizhou Province, China

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Abstract

A newly discovered Jiaguan Formation (Lower Cretaceous) tracksite from the Linjiang region of Guizhou Province, China, reveals the first example of a Cretaceous track morphotype attributable to the non-avian theropod ichnogenus Gigandipus, here named Gigandipus chiappei ichnosp nov. The theropod dominated locality also reveals the second report of the avian theropod ichnogenus Wupus, one of the largest avian traces currently known from the Lower Cretaceous. The Linjiang site provides evidence to support previous interpretations of a distinctive Lower Cretaceous theropod-dominated ichnofauna that was widespread in China and East Asia and highlights the similarity between Lower Cretaceous theropod ichnotaxa in East Asia and those found in the Lower Jurassic both in East Asia and elsewhere. These similarities in turn create various ichnotaxonomic challenges familiar to researchers working on theropod tracks, and we recommend caution in the naming of new theropod ichnotaxa at the ichnogenus level.

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Xing, L., Lockley, M. G., Klein, H., Zeng, R., Cai, S., Luo, X., & Li, C. (2018). Theropod assemblages and a new ichnotaxon Gigandipus chiappei ichnosp. nov. from the Jiaguan Formation, Lower Cretaceous of Guizhou Province, China. Geoscience Frontiers, 9(6), 1745–1754. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gsf.2017.12.012

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