Australotitan cooperensis was up to 30 metres long and was the largest to ever roam Australia and among the top five biggest in the world.
A gigantic dinosaur discovered in Australia’s outback has been identified as a new species and recognized as one of the largest to ever roam the Earth, according to paleontologists.
The Australotitan cooperensis, part of the titanosaur family that lived about 100 million years ago, has finally been named and described 15 years after its bones were first uncovered.
It is estimated to have stood at 5-6.5 meters (16-21 feet) high and measured 25-30 meters (82-98 feet) in length — which would make it Australia’s biggest dinosaur.
“It’s been a long time coming, but we are very proud to showcase Australia’s largest dinosaur species,” said Scott Hocknull, a palaeontologist at the Queensland Museum and a co-author of the study. “We know it was a plant-eating dinosaur. It had a very long neck and a very long tail and had the look of a typical brachiosaurus. But it was enormous. It was a titanosaurian.”
Nicknamed Cooper, after the nearby creek where it was first found in 2006, the dinosaur is estimated to have lived more than 90 million years ago, during the Cretaceous period, and is estimated to have weighed about 67 tonnes.
“These are the largest dinosaurs that ever walked on earth and based on the preserved limb size comparisons, this new titanosaur is estimated to be in the top five largest in the world,” said Robyn Mackenzie, the director of the Eromanga Natural History Museum, who first spotted the dinosaur’s remains along with her husband on her family farm in southwest Queensland.
Since excavations for dinosaur fossils began in 2005 in the area, known as Eromanga Basin, two other large sauropods have also been discovered. They are nicknamed George and Zac.