About the Tracks

Detail of Cretaceous Coastal Environment, © Karen Carr

Illustration of two sauropods (background). Painting © Karen Carr

Sauropod Dinosaurs

Sauropods were massive quadrupedal herbivores. Their limbs were column-like, adapted for support and movement of their large bodies. The hind feet were larger than the front, and sauropods had an extremely long neck on the end of which was a relatively small and lightweight skull. The teeth were triangular and flattened, or slender and pencil-like.

Two brachiosaur-like titanosauriform sauropods are candidates for the sauropod track maker.

Paluxysaurus jonesi, the official State Dinosaur of Texas, was 60 feet long, the neck accounting for over 40 percent of the total length! The associated partial skeletons of four individuals have been excavated from Jones Ranch in Hood County, Texas, less than 9.5 miles from where the museum’s Glen Rose track slab was found in the Paluxy River.

Sauroposeidon proteles, its name meaning “earthquake god perfected before the end” was truly a giant, estimated to have been 92 feet long! Four cervical vertebrae (bones of the neck) were discovered in southeastern Oklahoma. The characteristics of the vertebrae are those of brachiosaurid dinosaurs, but are longer and more spacious. Despite the fact that no foot bones have been found, Sauroposeidon is a candidate track maker given its size and the dimensions of the sauropod tracks in the Paluxy River.

What you see in the exhibit