Hi all. Today, a paper of mine regarding a tyrannosauroid metatarsus from the Merchantville Formation of Delaware housed in the Yale Peabody Museum was published in PeerJ, and I figured I’d give a few words on it here.
Tyrannosauroids are poorly known east of the Mississippi, their fossil record in eastern North America consisting of the holotypes of Appalachiosaurus and Dryptosaurus, additional specimens referred to these taxa, and other fragmentary elements. These all seem to come from genera more closely related to derived tyrannosauroids outside Tyrannosauridae, but the small number of Appalachian tyrannosauroid specimens included in past phylogenetic analyses of Tyrannosauroidea has hindered the investigation of this possibility.
That’s where the Yale Peabody specimen YPM VPPU.021795 comes in. Though the bones included in this set are all only partially preserved and consist of two metatarsals, they provide new evidence for the hypothesis that Appalachian dinosaur genera were generally more basal than their western relatives. Furthermore, the specimen is different enough from Appalachiosaurus and Dryptosaurus that it likely represents a distinct animal (which I did not name due to the small amount of material included in YPM VPPU.021795).
You can find the paper below, and thanks so much for reading:
2017) A tyrannosauroid metatarsus from the Merchantville formation of Delaware increases the diversity of non-tyrannosaurid tyrannosauroids on Appalachia. PeerJ5:e4123 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.4123(