Prosauropoda

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Related to Prosauropods: Thyreophorans

Prosauropoda

[‚prä·sȯ′räp·əd·ə]
(paleontology)
A division of the extinct reptilian suborder Sauropodomorpha; they possessed blunt teeth, long forelimbs, and extremely large claws on the first finger of the forefoot.

Prosauropoda

 

a suborder of fossil reptiles of the order Saurischia that lived in the Triassic. Prosauropods ranged in length from 2 m to greater than 6 m. The reptiles were an intermediate group between the Theropoda and the Sauropoda. Prosauropods had a relatively small head. The neck and tail were longer than in Theropoda but considerably shorter than in Sauropoda. The forelegs in some species were half as long as the hind legs; in others they were two-thirds as long as the posterior ones. Although they predominantly used bipedal locomotion, prosauropods apparently were also able to move on all fours. Their teeth were rather small, homogeneous, and thickened in the middle. Prosauropods possibly were omnivorous but fed predominantly on plant substances. Remains have been found in North America, southern Africa, Europe, and Asia (China). A typical representative of Prosauropoda was Plateosaurus.

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That a gradually extended juvenile-growth phase in prosauropods led to the immensity of some later sauropods is "an interesting idea," says Paul Barrett of the Natural History Museum in London.
Prosauropod remains found previously in other parts of the world could be as old as the Madagascar ones, says Hans-Dieter Sues, a paleobiologist at the University of Toronto.