Fun Brachytrachelopan Facts For Kids

Oluwatosin Michael
Oct 20, 2022 By Oluwatosin Michael
Originally Published on Sep 25, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
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Brachytrachelopan facts explain how this dinosaur was a unique sauropod species

The Brachytrachelopan is a short-necked sauropod dinosaur from the Oxfordian and Tithonian ages of the Late Jurassic epoch in Argentina. These dinosaurs’ fossils were in found 16 mi (25 km) northeast of Cerro Cóndor, Chubut Province, in the Cañadón Calcáreo Formation.

These were found due to fluvial sandstone exposure due to erosion, and the only known specimen is on display in the Museum of Palaeontology Egidio Feruglio.

The excavated fossil of the Brachytrachelopan mesai was incomplete due to erosion. However, three sacral, twelve dorsal, and eight cervical vertebrae along with some cervical and dorsal ribs, an end of the left femur and tibia, and the right ilium were recovered in a pristine state, enough to understand the overall physical appearance of these dinosaurs.

These sauropod dinosaurs had a large body size like most dicraeosaurids but much shorter necks, long tails, and pillar-like, padded feet.

After evaluating 154 anatomical features and 27 sauropod taxa, Rauhut et al. classified the Brachytrachelopan to the Dicraeosauridae family under the superfamily Diplodocoidea. This sauropod dinosaur was named after the local shepherd who found the fossil specimen, Daniel Mesa, and the name of this genus means “short-necked Pan”. Pan means God of shepherds.

 If you enjoy reading about scaly creatures, find out some interesting information about the Rapetosaurus and the Uteodon.

Brachytrachelopan Interesting Facts

How do you pronounce 'Brachytrachelopan'?

The name 'Brachytrachelopan' is pronounced as brak-i-trak-eh-loh-pan.

What type of dinosaur was a Brachytrachelopan?

These dinosaurs are sauropods, specifically known for their herbivorous diet, large bodies, pillar-like feet, and long tails and necks.

In which geological period did the Brachytrachelopan roam the earth?

These sauropods are estimated to have lived from the Oxfordian, earliest stage to the Titonian i.e. latest stage, of the Late Jurrasic Epoch.

When did the Brachytrachelopan become extinct?

Based on the epoch they belonged to, these dinosaurs are said to have gone extinct about 150 million years ago.

Where did a Brachytrachelopan live?

Since the location of the discovered fossil was northeast of Cerro Cóndor, Chubut Province in the Cañadón Calcáreo Formation of Argentina, these dinosaurs have been confirmed as residents of South America.

What was a Brachytrachelopan's habitat?

The exact habitat of the Brachytrachelopan has not been discovered. However, based on evidence about general dinosaur habitats and the Late Jurassic period, especially the sauropod, it is known that they lived in terrestrial environments, usually inland, along ancient rivers, forested floodplains, or densely vegetated lakes and swamps.

Who did a Brachytrachelopan live with?

Although the exact living patterns of the Brachytrachelopan are unknown, some evidence suggests that most of these dinosaurs were herd travelers and preferred living in a small group. Fossilized sauropod footprints of multiple trackways suggest that the young traveled in the center for protection.

How long did a Brachytrachelopan live?

The lifespan of the Brachytrachelopan has not been discovered. However, some studies say there is a possibility that sauropods lived for around 50-100 years!

How did they reproduce?

The exact reproduction process of the Brachytrachelopan has not been defined, but it is confirmed that they carried out oviparous reproduction, with the eggs fertilized inside the female through copulation.

It has also been suggested that this sauropod was a colonial nester, like the Albatross, after discovering around 80 different clutches of this dinosaur in one zone.

In addition, their eggs were extremely hard-shelled with a calcareous exterior and clutch sizes of less than 10, but their size was tiny when compared to these gigantic dicraeosaurids. It is also speculated that the young had minimal to no parental care, even during incubation.

This is because, some evidence shows that this dinosaur constructed symbiotic nests in a hydrothermal environment, which ensured that thermoradiance and soil moisture were utilized to incubate the eggs.

Brachytrachelopan Fun Facts

What did a Brachytrachelopan look like?

The exact features of this dinosaur cannot be described because the only known fossil has 12 dorsal, three sacral, and eight cervical vertebrae with a pillar-like centropostzygapophyseal lamina. It also has the dorsal ribs and cervical ribs, the end of the left tibia, and femur, and the right ilium.

Based on the studies conducted on these remains, this sauropod dinosaur's neck was around 40 percent shorter than other dicraeosaurids.

The Brachytrachelopan has the shortest neck in the entire Sauropoda clade

How many bones did a Brachytrachelopan have?

Since only a few parts of the Brachytrachelopan skeleton were retrieved, it is difficult to give an exact count of the total number of bones in its body.

How did they communicate?

The communication behavior of this dinosaur has not been understood due to limited fossil evidence. However, some studies based on sauropod dinosaurs suggest that they had clearer shape- and color-oriented vision than other simple mammals, which could mean they also used visual displays along with vocalizations to communicate with each other.

How big was a Brachytrachelopan?

Based on the remains, it is estimated that this dinosaur species was around 29.5-36 ft (9-11 m). This means it was about the same length as the Killer Whale.

How fast could a Brachytrachelopan move?

The exact speed at which this dinosaur could move is unknown. Although, according to Thulborn, the estimated maximum speed of most sauropod species is 4.47 mph (7.2 kph), which is one-third the speed of the Asian Elephant.

How much did a Brachytrachelopan weigh?

The estimated weight of this dinosaur species is around 15,000 lb (6,803.88 kg), similar to the weight of the African Bush Elephant.

What were the male and female names of the species?

These dinosaur species do not have separate names for their male and female counterparts.

What would you call a baby Brachytrachelopan?

The young ones of this dinosaur can be called hatchling or nestling.

What did they eat?

Since the Brachytrachelopan belongs to the Sauropoda clade, it is confirmed that their diet was herbivorous, although the exact food content is known.

How aggressive were they?

This dinosaur was usually docile and did not display aggression towards other dinosaurs. However, in case they were attacked by theropods, it is speculated that they may have whipped their long tails to drive away any threats.

Did you know...

The short neck of the Brachytrachelopan is speculated to be an evolved feature to help them preserve energy spent on long necks and to be able to consume foods that did not require much competition with bigger sauropods.

How was the Brachytrachelopan discovered?

The discovery of this dinosaur is quite an intriguing story. In South America, a shepherd named Daniel Mesa discovered the fossils of the Brachytrachelopan in the fluvial sandstone erosion in the Cañadón Cálcero formation while searching for his lost sheep. Although unconfirmed, it is suggested that this discovery is fairly recent and could date back to 2005.

What does the name 'Brachytrachelopan' mean?

The name Brachytrachelopan directly translates to "short-necked pan", and pan means god of shepherds.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly dinosaur facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable facts, check out these Xiaotingia facts and Mussaurus facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Brachytrachelopan coloring pages.

*The second image is an illustration by Nobu Tamura.

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Written by Oluwatosin Michael

Bachelor of Science specializing in Microbiology

Oluwatosin Michael picture

Oluwatosin MichaelBachelor of Science specializing in Microbiology

With a Bachelor's in Microbiology from the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, Oluwatosin has honed his skills as an SEO content writer, editor, and growth manager. He has written articles, conducted extensive research, and optimized content for search engines. His expertise extends to leading link-building efforts and revising onboarding strategies. 

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