Abstract

Sauropod remains from the early Cretaceous (late Barremian–early Aptian) of Salas de los Infantes (Burgos, Spain) are described. The material consists of several caudal vertebrae, chevrons, a pair of ischia and a femur that is presumed to belong to a single medium-sized individual. Based on the tall neural arches and broad neural spines of the anterior caudal vertebrae, the specimen is referred to the Diplodocoidea. Moreover, it shows affinities with the Rebbachisauridae, a basal clade of diplodocoids. Both the caudal vertebrae and ischium of the Burgos sauropod are similar in form to those of ‘Rebbachisaurus’ tessonei from the Albian-Cenomanian of South America. However, there are some differences with regard to this taxon, so the Burgos sauropod is provisionally referred to as Rebbachisauridae in-det. Rebbachisaurids are known in the Aptian-Cenomanian of the western Gondwanan landmasses (Africa and South America), although further remains have been reported from the Coniacian-Santonian of Argentina and the Hauteri-vian–Barremian of Croatia. The Burgos diplodocoid appears to be one of the earliest representative of the Rebbachisau-ridae. This discovery supports previous evidence of a land connection between Europe and Africa across the Tethys seaway sometime in the early Cretaceous.

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