Add Dinosaurs To Australia’s Collection Of Rare Species

First Posted: Mar 28, 2017 05:19 AM EDT

Not for the first time, Australia shocks the world with the species found in the country. From massive spiders to venomous snakes to a collection of marsupials, the Land Down Under can now add a massive dinosaur to its long list of endemic species.

While no gigantic dinosaurs have been found roaming Australia these days, more than 100 million years ago, nearly two dozen dinosaur species did live there, such as ornithopods and sauropods. However, the massive asteroid struck Earth, continents moved and the once muddy-stretch of land became where they once lived turned into the country that the world has known today.

According to The Washington Post, it seemed that many dinosaur tracks remained. Among them was the largest print ever recorded: a 5-foot, 7-inch footprint from a sauropd (long-necked dinosaur). Along the same track also came the evidence of a spiky tailed stegosaurus living in Oz.

Huffington Post noted that this print is massive -- about as long as the average American man's height. Dr. Steve Salisbury, lead author of the study, shared that the next biggest footprint was only about 3 feet 6 inches found in Mongolia's Gobi Desert just last year. At the time, it was deemed among the largest of its kind. Compared to the sauropod, however, it was smaller -- around 27 inches shorter than the one from Australia's Jurassic Park.

The study, which was published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, noted thousands of marks along a 15-mile stretch of Australian coastline called Walmadany. Here indigenous Goolarabooloo people lived, with the region likened by the researchers as Australia's very own "Jurassic Park." Despite what seems to be a new revelation to modern humans, the Goolarabooloo people have known about the trackway for millenia. The massive markings, only visible during the low tide, have already been featured in the Goolarabooloo oral histories.

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