Daten zum Projekt

A specimen-based phylogenetic analysis of Camarasaurus to clarify the systematic position of Europasaurus (additional support for Europe)

Initiative: Forschung in Museen
Ausschreibung: Kooperative Forschungsprojekte mittlere Museen
Bewilligung: 20.02.2014
Laufzeit: 1 Jahr


Knowing the phylogenetic position of an organism is one of the most basic points for the understanding of its biology and evolution. Europasaurus holgeri Mateus et al., 2006 is a peculiar dwarfed form of sauropod dinosaurs, which otherwise constitute the largest land animals that ever lived on this planet. Europasaurus thus gives us the possibility to study major transitions in body size from truly gigantic animals like Brachiosaurus to such relatively small-sized forms as Europasaurus in geologically short time intervals. Thereby we learn how and why such changes may occur. A firm phylogenetic framework is however crucial, but agreement on the position of Europasaurus has not yet been reached. In recent phylogenetic analyses, the dwarfed sauropod has been switching position between Brachiosauridae or a position more close to the genus Camarasaurus from North America. The project provides a phylogenetic analysis of Camarasaurus and thereby clarifies the systematic position of Europasaurus.


  • Dr. Oliver Wings

    Niedersächsisches Landesmuseum
    Fachbereich Naturkunde

  • Dr. Emanuel Tschopp

    Universidade Nova de Lisboa
    Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia